In my travels I came across a group of students of the University of Ghana, Legon on a quest to make a difference by providing medical aid to the elderly. There is a growing trend of impeccable brave innovative works carried out entirely by the youth of this country but this one struck my attention more.
I spoke with one of the leading figures of the movement Kofi George and this was what ensued:(EK is Ehm Kannde (me) and KHF is Kofi of Health Factor)
EK: I have been following your work regarding the health of the elderly, can you tell my audience more about it?
KHF: The Health Factor Foundation simply called the health factor. Our slogan goes, the health of the aged our priority. We are a team of young medical professionals ranging from medical laboratory sciences students, medical students, physiotherapy students and medical professionals as our health consultants.
EK: Wow! that is just as impressive as I an anticipated. I know how expensive medical screening can be so how do you bank roll your operations since you are only students?
KHF: For now we are soliciting for funds by undertaking screening at moderate prices to help commence with the main project.
EK: Okay! that is cool but have you been able to undertake any screening exercise yet?
KHF: Yes! The first screening was done at the Accra Mall on the 1st of December and the next is on the 26th at West Hills Mall in Accra.
EK: Really!!? how was the patronage and was it also among the aged?
KHF: haha, the patronage was a bit above our expectations because we had very little budget for publicity and you as a medical scientist knows how hard it can be even getting permission to take blood specimen from people. And yes, it was mostly among the elderly but we have no restrictions.
EK: hehe, I understand that, you guys are doing great but for emphasis, what exactly is the long term goals?
KHF: The project is aimed at helping the aged by providing primary health care services. This include diagnosis of chronic diseases including diabetes, congenital heart diseases,cancers (prostate, breast and cervical cancers); retro cases and other health matters of the aged.
EK: Okay, I think that is a very impressive initiative. When you finally roll out the main program with the aged will it be free?
KHF: haha Dr. Kannde, I know where you are heading with this question so I will answer everything even before you ask. Let me start by making it clear that this movement is not a profit oriented one. As you know, we are students and for the continuity of the initiative we would need funds. The main program will be maximally subsidized but not free. The money raised from each expedition shall be rolled back into improving quality and efficiency of the next. It is a pure social intervention powered by the youth.
EK: That is interesting,. You read my mind there! Is the team made of only health related students?
KHF: No! The team includes both medical and non-medical students because the task required during outreach is not only medical and the non-medics are also willing to contribute their quota.
EK: Wow! that is fine. I think I need to be part of your team, what do you say?
KHF: haha, Doc., you are welcome, we will be delighted to have you on board.
EK: Thank you. I see you are self motivated and your direction is great, do you have any words for the youth of this country?
KHF: I think what we need in this country is proactive leadership and I think it is only the youth who can take the challenge on. I know a lot out there who are doing great and I encourage them to carry on. To those with ideas, don’t be scared to face the world with your mind. Every achievement starts with a thought. I encourage the youth to be brave and proactive, that is how we can get things done.
EK: wow powerful! Thank you for sharing your time with us and we will look forward to speaking with you again in the future.
KHF: It is my pleasure Doc. I also look forward to that. Thank you!
You have heard it all! they are students and they think reaching out and helping cannot wait. Most often we think one cannot make any impact whilst in school but clearly this group is defying that notion.
Lets show support by getting the word out. May be your share will help them get funded. I am passionate about health related initiatives of this nature because most of these chronic conditions have no early alarm systems and before you know it you are lying on the hospital bed. interventions of this nature gets people aware and saves lives. Lets give this a maximum share. Thank you.