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Baby Face

Description

A child is seen at World Vision's mobile health clinic in Herat, Afghanistan. Mothers are grateful to have care close by that they can rely on.

World Vision’s mobile health team usually sees about 60 patients in a day. Most of them are poor and have difficulty accessing health services that are not free.

“I am six months pregnant. My first visit was one month ago,” says Maryam, 22.  Before Maryam came to the mobile health team, she suffered from headaches and stomach pains. Because she is pregnant, she assumed these symptoms were normal, but during her first visit, Maryam learned that she has high blood pressure caused by the pregnancy.

Thanks to the mobile health team, Maryam is now aware of dangerous symptoms and is getting the care she needs. 

During the mobile clinic visit, nursing and midwifery students examine and counsel sick mothers and their children under teacher observation. Among the noises, the sound of a mother’s cries can be heard behind the curtain. “Let that woman enter the room,” says one nursing student.

The woman clutching her sick 18-month-old child enters the room, her eyes red from crying. The supervisor examines the child immediately and prescribes the required medicine, while two students try to calm the mother, using counseling techniques they have learned.

“My son cried all last night. I couldn’t do anything for him except put a wet cloth on his head and abdomen, hoping to decrease his fever,” says Zia Gul, 37, wiping the tears from her face.

Zia is happy when she leaves the small clinic, praying for those who helped her and her child.

The mothers who visit the mobile health team put great trust in them. “Public clinics are crowded and healthcare providers don’t have time to listen to health problems carefully,” says Mah Gul, 35. “Here, there are a lot of midwives and nurses who are so kind and carefully listen to what we have to say and give us counseling about different health issues.”

Zohra, 28, is a mother of four children. Her youngest child, a 3-year-old boy, has diarrhea. Zohra knows that when she brings her children to the mobile health team, they will receive quality medical care and medicine for free. This gift has given her new hope.

“For as long as I can remember, there has been war in our country, Zohra says.  "We couldn’t experience the taste of happiness, or the feeling of a comfortable life. [World Vision staff] are trying to start a new chapter in our life and make it possible for us to taste a healthy life.”

Photo ©2014 Narges Ghafary/World Vision

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