After over a year, Gede Foundation has re-entered Mpape and Mararaba communities in order to not only strengthen their Self Help Groups (SHGs), but also to provide a clear referral pathway from the communities to the Primary Healthcare Centres (PHC) to a secondary healthcare facility.
With that in mind, the Foundation held a Mental Health Camp (MHC) on Saturday, August 11th 2018, in Mpape at the PHC. As always, there was an array of cases ranging from schizophrenia to epilepsy to depression. Our regular readers will recall the lady who was chained to a pole in a church for over 3 years. She has, for some time now, not been attending SHG meetings and we had hoped to see her progress as we had heard there was a relapse. Much of it bordered on the fact that she was pregnant and could therefore not continue with the medication she was on. She was also not doing any type of business and so was financially handicapped. However, after she had her baby (who is now 10 months old), she continued with her medication. When she came to the MHC on Saturday, she did not only look like a different woman, she was different. She was very articulate and seemed to have all her faculties intact. She narrated that she was still on her medication. She has continued with her business - tailoring and pastry making. She is also able to regularly buy her medication without significant interruptions. In fact, when she went to speak to the attending physician for the day, Dr. Oladele Fagbohun, he did not seem to think there was anything wrong with her. She had to be sent back to the doctor to explain her history properly. The headaches that had plagued her for such a long time are now a thing of the past!
Another interesting case was of a woman, who for over 10 years has had a recurring problem. She feels hot inside her body at night. Even after she removes beddings and clothing, she still feels hot. She even goes as far as immersing herself in cold water to no avail. This has continued, along with blinding headaches, until she was given some form of medication. Even as she was speaking tears were just pouring - but not because she was crying, it appeared that was the norm. She did not even seem to realise that the tears were flowing. After she saw the doctor, he concluded that she was schizophrenic as there were other issues that she divulged to him. This was one of the many new cases that were presented.
Epilepsy, remained the most common ailment plaguing our users. One of our old users, even with medication, still has regular seizures. His mother has thankfully seen a pattern. When there is a change in the weather, hot or cold, windy or rainy, the boy has violent seizures. Overall, he is doing well.