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Julian Omidi on Free Health Care Initiative in Sierra Leone

Julian Omidi contributes to the Omidi, MD site to discuss positive news regarding free health initiatives in Sierra Leone. Julian Omidi is excited to share this good news with the readers of Omidi, MD.

Today, I have the pleasure of sharing a bit of good news with you. As usual, however, good news doesn’t mean that we can rest on our laurels where poverty is concerned. Intense effort is still needed in order to completely eradicate this condition, but my brother, Michael Omidi, M.D., and myself are pleased to let you know whenever progress is being made.

Imagine living in an area where a single medical facility is relied upon to serve as many as 40,000 people and where 200 out of every 1000 children die before their 5th birthday. Now, imagine that this facility is actually located in a small room inside one person’s home. This is precisely how people living in Susan’s Bay, located in Sierra Leone’s capital city of Freetown, used to access medical care before a new health center was established in March of 2012.

In 2009, a Free Health Initiative was established which has enabled pregnant women and children in Sierra Leone, Africa to now receive free health care. So far, the Initiative has helped reduce the number of fatalities among pregnant women and young children by 60%. Despite this incredible reduction, however, Sierra Leone is not on schedule to meet the United Nation’s Millenium Development Goal of decreasing the number of deaths of children under 5 years of age by two-thirds by the year 2015. This is because malnutrition and disease is still ravaging this region as more medical attention is still needed. In order to meet this goal, an additional 8 million deaths must be prevented.

As we spotlight the accomplishments of the Free Health Care Initiative in Sierra Leone, we also must take action to help this region meet the UN’s Millenium Development Goal. Along with my brother, Michael Omidi, M.D., I believe that this goal can be met by supporting a number of the organizations featured at No More Poverty’s website at NMP.org. For example, supporting International Surgical Mission Support helps provide direct health care to people living in impoverished countries, including Sierra Leone. ISMS also provides education to healthcare providers in poor countries, as well as equipment to help them serve native residents. Drop in the Bucket and Children’s Hunger Fund are also accessible from No More Poverty’s site. Charities like these help assure that people in developing countries have access to clean water and nutrition in order to help thwart the onset and spread of preventable disease.

The Free Health Care Initiative in Sierra Leone deserves our attention, as well as our applause. We’d like each of you to spread the word about the Initiative in order to help bring attention to the difference that it has helped to make in the health of pregnant women and young children there. No More Poverty hopes to see the Free Health Care Initiative spread so that more health centers can be opened in Sierra Leone and so that the U.N.’s goals can be met and, hopefully, exceeded.

By Julian Omidi

Readhead, Alexandra. “Sierra Leone: Keeping Children Alive.” Sierra Leone: Keeping Children Alive. Al Jazeera English, 21 Oct. 2012. Web. 05 Nov. 2012. <http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opinion/2012/10/2012101474535645556.html>

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