The Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC), collaborated with different city-based groups and has launched the Swasthya Sevak Program, aspirational community-based healthcare (CBHC) service program aimed at providing people living in slums with access to essential services such as vaccination support and other covid awareness.
Slums are home to more than 36% of Nagpur’s population. The key to effectively combating the third wave is to target the most vulnerable segments of the population. The Swasthya Sevak program is an effective, flexible, and sustainable option that aims to build a network of Swasthya Sevaks (community health coordinators) from the vulnerable community to deliver health services to every house in the slums.
Aside from a lack of medical understanding, disadvantaged communities are also dealing with misleading information about vaccination, which makes them reluctant to get the vaccine. As a result, the door-to-door health system model is essential. The Swasthya Sevak Programme will primarily work to ensure that slum dwellers have access to existing administration services such as free testing and vaccines.
Ram Joshi, NMC’s additional municipal commissioner, says, “Vaccines will be critical in combating the third wave, and there is significant skepticism, particularly in the slums.” Unfortunately, mass awareness campaigns have had a limited impact on the economically disadvantaged.
As a result, the Swasthya Sevak model will increase door-to-door awareness. The Swasthya Sevaks will raise awareness about covid symptoms, the importance of testing, the correct protocol to follow if someone tests positive, and will counsel and support slum residents in getting vaccinated.
The program’s goal is to ensure that each slum family in Nagpur has direct access to one health coordinator. This is seen as a step toward preparing for the pandemic’s third wave and making healthcare more accessible in order to save vulnerable lives. All the zonal medical officers will work with Swasthya Sevaks to ensure the program runs smoothly.