health

Of all the water that exists on our planet, around 97% is salt water. Of the 3% or so of fresh water available, almost half of it remains frozen in glaciers, ice caps, or deep underground aquifers. Yes – just around 1.5% is available for our use, making every drop count. Further, with continuing population growth and industrial growth, demand continues to escalate in a supply-constrained domain.

Improving the Lives in Rural India by Technology-enabled Solutions

SEVAKs Model for Preventive Health

Name / Headline:

SEVAK Driven Preventive Health for Rural India

The problem& Solution:

  1. It is projected that India will have 79.4 million individuals with type 2 diabetes in 2030, and rural Indians – 70% of the population are at higher risk.There is currently no organized delivery of health care in rural India – preventive health care is unavailable in the villages. Clean drinking water is not available to all, sanitation is not adequate and Immunization, though available, do not cover all those who need it. The mission of the SEVAK project is to improve access to care in rural areas of India and the works using local resources.

 

Sanitation and Health, Education in Village communities through improved Awareness and Knowledge of Prevention and Management of Diseases and Health Promotion”

sevak

With the support from the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI), Dr. Thakor Patel (Founder, SEVAK Foundation) conducted a study in rural villages of India to determine the impact living conditions had on the villagers’ health.  The study found

  • 8 % of the population over the age of 35 suffered from diabetes or were pre-diabetic
  • 10.5% suffered from hypertension or high blood pressure
  • Less than 50% of the households visited had in-house toilets
  • Access to clean drinking water was limited

Realizing the impact on these villager’s lives, should they be unable to control their hypertension/diabetes and developed deeper medical issues, Dr. Patel set out to find a long-term solution.  Leveraging his 23-year career with the US Navy and Department of Veterans Affairs, Dr. Patel launched Project SEVAK in 2010.   This project, modeled after the Independent Duty Corpsman (IDC) medic program for the US Navy, recruits, trains, and manages a network of local health care workers in remote villages in India – SEVAKS (click here to learn more about the training program).  The SEVAKS screen villager for diabetes, obesity, hypertension, and other health issues facing rural villagers in India.  In addition to providing medical screening and education the SEVAKS also educates the villagers on the importance of proper sanitation, clean drinking water, toilets, and lifestyle modification.

 

Criteria For A Sevak

The person should meet the following criteria. He/she must live in the village; has a graduate degree if possible but the high school level may be fine. They can continue to work on the farms but must have the willingness to work in their own community. They will be given training in Baroda for three months (lodging & boarding provided). They should be able to read English, and need not be proficient.

WGF leaders providing oversight:

Dr. Thakore Patel (member of WGF Health Council).

Impact

Since its start in 2010, Project SEVAK has successfully trained and placed SEVAKS in nearly 100 villages in rural India, touching the lives of more than 30,000 people. Efforts are underway to double that over the next few years.

Call to Action:

Health is one of the noblest giving. And with each $1,000 contribution, you can enable your home town (and surrounding areas) with long-impacting preventive & holistic care. This is one of the most wonderful opportunity for alumni and others to see power of technology and giving making a difference on hundreds of lives forever.

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