The Mobile Medical Units’ visit to the easternmost island of the Cyclades lasted for five days (March 6-March 11), and was carried out with the exclusive support of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (www.SNF.org).
Approximately two months ago, the two Mobile Medical Units, along with an MRI scanner, marked the launch of the five-year National Primary Healthcare Education and Promotion Program in island and border regions of Greece.
During each of their missions, the Mobile Medical Units are staffed by a team of fully qualified medical professionals, which offers its services on a voluntary basis and comprises of the following specialties: gynecology, dietetics, cardiology, dentistry, orthopedics, ophthalmology, pulmonology and otolaryngology. In addition, the fact that the units in question are equipped with a digital mammography unit, a portable X-ray machine, and a bone density scanner means they are in a position to directly respond even to the citizens’ most specialized needs. In charge of the Program’s design and implementation is Dr. Panagiotis Koulouvaris, Head Lecturer at the University Orthopedic Clinic and Scientific Coordinator of the Olympic Village Polyclinic Orthopedic Department.
During the units’ mission in Amorgos, the program’s scientific team and its medical and nursing personnel examined a total of 783 residents. Both the way the program has been designed, and the composition of the scientific team that accompanies the units on each of their missions, provided the island’s residents with the opportunity to gain access, completely free of charge, to state-of-the-art and comprehensive healthcare and health protection services.
Specifically, in Amorgos, in the span of five days, the team carried out a total of 2,067 medical visits and 887 examinations. In particular, they performed 214 ultrasound scans, 171 electrocardiograms, 89 cardiac ultrasounds, 79 mammography screenings, 77 smear tests, 77 bone density scans and 42 HbA1C tests. In addition, they diagnosed 25 cases that require immediate secondary care, and which have access to the healthcare services offered by the Olympic Village Polyclinic, for further tests and treatment.
All of the island’s primary and nursery school children were given eye tests, and all primary school children underwent anthropometric measurements, body fat testing and nutritional assessment, in accordance with the program’s standard practice to prioritize the youngest members of society, as well as residents that either present serious medical conditions or belong to high risk social groups (i.e. the elderly).
As well as the immediate medical support that it provides through the units to the residents of the country’s remote areas, the Program also aims to bring about long-term benefits for Greek society, helping to improve the quality of life of the country’s citizens. In view of that, during each mission, the program’s medical doctors give open talks, to inform and educate the public on topics related to prevention, and health protection. In the case of Amorgos, talks were given to the island’s students and their parents regarding the value of a healthy diet, the dangers of smoking, the early diagnosis of learning disabilities, sex education and career counseling. In addition, the island’s residents were given a first aid course.
The next mission will take place in Kasos, on April 10th, while on June 5th the Mobile Medical Units will visit Astypalaia.
For more information about the Mobile Medical Units, click here.