Monday, April 27, 2015

A giant leap . . .

Last week was quite an encouragement as our experiment with backyard captive poultry scaled new heights. Many of the people who had adopted this technique of growing fowl had reported that their hen had started laying eggs by the age of 22nd to the 24th weeks. 

We never had the patience to wait till they started laying eggs or our travels did not permit us to keep the chicken for long. However, a batch of four escaped the butcher's knife and we had been waiting. Our patience paid off as one laid an egg at the age of 21 weeks and 6 days. And then, they have been laying regularly...

Snaps . . . 






Considering into fact that these colored eggs cost about 8-9 INR per egg in the market, I can see it's potential as a source of extra income for poor families . . .  

Any takers ? ? ? 

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Monday, April 20, 2015

Enterogermina

Many of you will be wondering what this is. Well, this is a medicine which I found written in prescriptions of many a quack for diarrhoea, especially in children. And most of them did not have a prescription for ORS, the mainstay of any treatment for diarrhoea . . .

Last week, I thought of looking it up. It is of course a medication with no clear cut evidence of any benefit. It was more interesting toto read the first paragraph in the product insert.


It looks like a very complicated way of saying that this medicine may not be a medicine at all . . . It is as good as eating chocolates or drinking horlicks . . .

Another medicine to dupe a poor sick man into poverty . . . Another interesting aspect. This 'medicine' is easily available, but we have difficulty getting stuff like plain doxycycline, buscopan, dihydrochlorothiazide etc . . . 

Dangerous

Almost everyday, we at Kachhwa are reminded of how dangerous a disease, tuberculosis is turning out to be. Last week, we had a perfect example of how the disease has got itself entrenched in our communities and how helpless we have been in controlling the spread.

Mr. KK, a young man, about 25 years was brought to our outpatient with complaints of cough and fever since the last one year. He had already completed 8 months therapy of DOTS under the Revised National TB Program of the government. He had not improved. He had skipped medicines in between and therefore the 6 month long treatment took 8 months.

He did not remember whether he checked his sputum or not. He had only one X-Ray with him which he had taken 2 weeks back. The picture was bleak. 


2 weeks back someone told him that the persisting cough and fever was dangerous and therefore, he had been running from one hospital to the other – a whopping 4 places in 15 days.

The prescriptions are self explanatory. There is mention of MDRTB in at least 2 prescriptions. One place demanded a payment of 20000 INR which he could not cough up and therefore the concerned doctor crossed off the prescription.


Please note the crossed off medications.
Crossed off, as the patient could not afford 20,000 INR which the doctor demanded for admissiona and treatment.
The patient claims that this doctor guaranteed cure . . . 

The biggest problem is he is still not aware about the seriousness of the condition.

The challenges in Tuberculosis treatment remain quite basic –

1. Non-adherence to regular treatment
2. Late diagnosis and improper follow up
3. No mechanism in the ground level to detect resistance
4. Availability of anti-tuberculous medication as over the counter drugs
5. Mistrust of drugs provided through public healthcare

We’ve referred him to a tertiary care centre. I hope he gets the right management.

However, as each day progresses, we realise how dangerous MDRTB is slowly turning out to be. I wonder if the calculated prevalence rates are low . . .

I hope that we would be able to do at least the following in our Community Health Centres over the next year . . .

a. Drug sensitivity testing for all cases of tuberculosis

b. Curtail sale of anti-tuberculous medication over the counter. 

Till this is done, the situation can continue to become worse . . . 

Photo credit: StopTB

Friday, April 17, 2015

An Atheist's View on Life


I will live my life according to these beliefs
God does not exist
It is just foolish to think
That there is a God with a cosmic plan
That an all-powerful God brings redemption and healing to the pain and suffering in the world
Is a comforting thought, however
It
Is only wishful thinking
People can do as they please without eternal consequences
That idea that
I am deserving of Hell
Because of sin
Is a lie meant to make me a slave to those in power
“The more you have, the happier you will be”
Our existence has no grand meaning or purpose
In a world with no God
There is freedom to be who I want to be
But with God
Everything is fine
It is ridiculous to think
I am lost and in need of saving

A Christian’s View on Life
(read the above bottom to top)

I am lost and in need of saving
It is ridiculous to think
Everything is fine
But with God
There is freedom to be who I want to be
In a world with no God
Our existence has no grand meaning or purpose
“The more you have, the happier you will be”
Is a lie meant to make me a slave to those in power
Because of sin
I am deserving of Hell
That idea that
People can do as they please without eternal consequences
Is only wishful thinking
It
Is a comforting thought, however
That an all-powerful God brings redemption and healing to the pain and suffering in the world
That there is a God with a cosmic plan
It is just foolish to think
God does not exist
I will live my life according to these beliefs