As you know, I work with the Tropical Lab Initiative which delivers diagnostic testing in a rural location in Ghana.
We do this in an innovative way:
1. The lab itself is in the community.
2. We use a telemedicine platform called Commcare for sample submission and reporting.
3. The samples and not the clients, are transported to the lab.
All of this allows us to service a population who would otherwise travel a long way by foot, or ride pillion on a motorcycle, for a test. Not much fun if you are pregnant.
So what have I achieved so far?
With my colleagues Francis and Atta, our SOPs and safety procedures have been revised, the facility itself has been snagged and clinics re-trained to stimulate demand for our services. In addition, we mapped the whole process from phlebotomy to reimbursement to reduce unnecessary work and decrease the likelihood of errors. We want to make this lab as good as it can be. Why? Our vision is to create more labs like this so all rural Ghana has access to diagnostic testing. But a vision needs a strategy and a plan, so strategy and planning are also topics I have been grappling with.
On a PULSE assignment you need to be flexible. So here are the photos. Me as Analyst. Carpenter and Trainer. No apologies for the sweaty shirt though. Believe me, one constant here is the heat and humidity. Like you wouldn’t believe.
Finally, I linked up with a completely different NGO here in Kumasi. On Saturdays I’ve been helping some local children with their reading and we play ball games to finish the afternoon. Surprising for me, it’s a lot fun.