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Ramaiah’s Journey to Good Health

He was rejected by his children and made to sit outside the house. A patient of chronic asthma, his condition worsened to a point that he could barely breathe. The dumping grounds is one of the primary reasons for his condition. Every hospital where he sought help did nothing. The doctors had told his family that he will die sooner or later and that there is barely any hope.

So, his children chucked him out of the house.

Ramaiah expresses his happiness of the massive change he has found in his health conditions

When the MHC stumbled upon this patient, they immediately took up his case. The MHC doctor examined him only to find that his chronic asthma had become a bigger monster – Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary disease. It is also known as Chronic Obstructive Airway disease. His pulmonary lungs were blocked and the lower part of his lungs was clogged with water. This was causing his breathlessness and suffocation.

As a farmer, he had been allergic to dust and cold weather. It simply got worse over time. Now that he was taken care of by the MHC, he is now better and finally has a roof over his head too. The MHC doctor had also spoken to his family about the disease and they have realized their mistake. It is never too late to seek healthcare. Death should not see an inevitable cause for every small issue; it is the family’s duty to never quit on their member.

UWBe Hand-In-Hand with MILANA to Fight and Improve Lives of PLHIV

India’s NACP-IV has made the elimination of stigma and discrimination a major focus. In 2018, implementation on the HIV AIDS (prevention and control) Act began. The law criminalizes discrimination against people with HIV and AIDS, including within employment, healthcare, education, public facilities and public office, as well as protecting property and insurance rights. Despite this, people living with HIV continue to experience high levels of discrimination.

MILANA strives to provide family support network for people living with HIV/AIDS (PLHIV) located in Bangalore, India.  They also provide medical, nutrition and educational support for HIV infected children. They believe in helping PLHIV fight against the society’s stigma towards them.

United Way funds MILANA to carry on their crucial work for the well-being of the PLHIV community in every way possible.

Staying physically healthy is only one aspect of managing life with HIV. Maintaining one’s mental and emotional health is just as important. People who are newly diagnosed with HIV are at higher risk for some mental health conditions, such as depression. For depression or anxiety, talk to doctor or counselor.  Support groups can help making new friendships with other people who understand what it’s like to live with HIV.

MILANA, under its care and support program, they provide three main forms of support to the HIV patients. The first one is through home visit and care center visit where the outreach workers enquire about their well-being, create confidence among families, counsel those who are unwell and also educate the families on healthy nutritional practices while supporting few cases who require attention by visiting hospitals and care canters.

Outreach workers carrying out home visits

Their second form of support is through nutrition. MILANA in the form of monthly rations provided Supplementary Nutrition to 60 families infected and affected with HIV/AIDS. High Protein Mix, Soya and pulses were also given to all the members to improve on their nutritional status. Milk powder, Mega mass & Egg were given for suffering adolescent & youth.

And finally, we have counselling which is essential to the mental health of the PLHIV.

Effective and crucial, counselling is important to shield the PLHIV as family members, medical fraternity, employers and society in general take a harsh view of HIV positive status of a person.

Counselling session

Family counselling has helped in bringing family members and partners together. Many phone calls are received time to time from youth who do not have right information on sexual health. This being an age of experimentation and exposure, youth tend to get confused that causes them into getting involved with risky practices and reckless lifestyles. Guidance in utmost necessary in such cases.


Mobile Health Clinic Cures both the Patient and the Village’s Stigma

Jayamma, a 63-year-old lady, hails from a small village Gundlahalli. Like many villages in rural India, she has lived in one such village with superstitious beliefs. She was diagnosed with Hansen’s disease (also known as leprosy) at the age of 30. She lost the sensation in her limbs at the first stage of leprosy. There is a social stigma attached to this disease in many villages; Gundlahalli was no different. Due to this, she was secluded from the society and no one was willing to marry her.

Jayamma and her mother

One fine day, when the Mobile Health team visited the village, she approached them and cried out for help. The doctor checked her and the team immediately took her to Doddaballapura Government hospital. After diagnosis, she was referred to the Leprosarium at Magadi Road for further treatment. At that centre, she underwent reconstructive surgery and wax therapy. All her wounds were cleaned and dressed with antibiotics. She was also advised to take physiotherapy in order for her fingers to be restored to full health. Now, her body is responding well to the treatment.

Jayamma being treated

The impact of this small intervention is huge. People came to realize that this is not a communicable disease and is just a stage of the body. If proper treatment is given, the person concerned can be cured. Today, the people of Gundlahalli have accepted her.