Which actions are the most excellent?
“To gladden the heart of a human being,
to feed the hungry,
to help the afflicted,
to lighten the sorrow of the sorrowful,
and to remove the wrongs of the injured.“
Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him)
One of the pressing needs of our community is home care for the elderly and disabled. These groups of people find it very hard to access health services and suffer a great deal as a consequence. Their health may deteriorate due to inadequate input from health professionals.
Another neglected area in the same context is palliative care. When health issues reach a point beyond the limit of medical science, it is incumbent upon us to provide relief from symptoms that cause distress to the individual who, by that point is usually near the end of their lives. Treatment is available to alleviate or even abolish the suffering experienced at this stage.
These concepts are virtually inexistent in our healthcare system. Even if they are known by a small number of professionals, they are not structured in any meaningful way so as to benefit those most in need. Planning is therefore under way to plug this gap in the short term, but also to provide a better platform and infrastructure in the long term.
In this context, a major project close to realisation is free health care for the needy. This will involve 4 main aspects that will be delivered free of charge for the beneficiaries:
- An outpatient clinic;
- Home visits
- Provision of medical equipment on a temporary basis;
- Provision of free medication (where possible).
The aim is to offer generalist and specialist reviews to people who would otherwise be unable to afford health care, as well as nursing interventions and support through medical equipment, particularly for patients with vulnerability or dependency due to their medical condition(s). A suitable location for the outpatient clinic has already been set up, with a group of volunteers ready for action and basic equipment available for use, pending final medico-legal clearance.
Other projects are also in the pipeline, such as:
- Leisure and sports activities, e.g. hiking, badminton, martial arts and self-defence, chess, archery;
- Donation of gifts to shelters, care homes and hospitalised children;
- “Meals on wheels” – meal delivery service for housebound people;
- Planting trees on a medium to large scale.