NLR India Foundation implemented a project for counselling and follow-up of under treatment leprosy cases through a call center. A dedicated and trained counsellor was recruited and the cases were followed up on a fortnightly basis. The Call center was established in Jaipur, Rajasthan.
NLR India Foundation has conceptualized this project to showcase the usefulness of following up the leprosy patients during their treatment period through tele-counselling. The counsellor calls the patients, talks with them, gets the information about their physical and mental wellbeing, whether they have enough drugs for the rest of the month, do they need any extra support, are they practicing selfcare, are there any new signs and symptoms or worsening of symptoms (to know about reactions).
The feedbacks received were then shared with the government system. The system could find it easy to follow up with the patients. This support was even more relevant during the COVID pandemic.
The patients for the first time received calls (and fortnightly follow up calls) enquiring about their wellbeing and requirements. The requirements were also fulfilled by the system most of the time. The NLRIF’s regular feedback to relevant officials in the district and state with advocacy has generated confidence of the system on the model.
The state leprosy officer (SLO) of the Government of Rajasthan (one of NLR India’s intervention states)took interest in knowing about the activities done through the call centre – e.g. how the patients are being followed up, what was the duration of follow up, how many follow ups, what types of questions asked to the patients, what type of counseling provided, what the patients’ feedbacks were and what actions could have been taken based on those feedback.
Dr. Ashok Agarwal, Managing Trustee, NLR foundation India, shared his thoughts on the achievement saying “The sustainability of any program increases once it is owned by the government. In this case, the success of the pilot project can help the Government to implement this intervention throughout state. Dr. Pravin Kumar–the National Project Coordinator, said “This pilot project has demonstrated that follow up through tele-counselling is a good option as it gives the system much needed information of the situation and requirements of the patients. The feedback shared are acted upon and patients develop confidence in the government. It is a model which can be implemented throughout India”.
Source : Businesssource.in