Nonprofit organizations and community development associations formed the Community Support on Corona Virus to coordinate community and voluntary sector support for communities across Nigeria during COVID-19.
‘When the crisis hit, we were quite conscious of the increased numbers of people needing to self-isolate and shield, as well as their need for medication to be supplied to their houses,’ said National President Wider-Reach Empowerment Initiative. We began reaching out to our members and community pharmacists with whom we were collaborating through the Federal Government of Nigeria Program to see how we might help.’
We also developed the Pharmacy Delivery Scheme in collaboration with the Health and Social Care Board, which encourages Community Pharmacies and community leaders to join CDHN. We were then able to pair them up and provide a little sum of money to cover volunteer expenses. The project has gotten a great response, with 75 pharmacies and 320 community groups signed up and thousands of prescriptions filled.
We spoke with some community leaders about the implications of the Coronavirus epidemic, which foretold a number of changes in how our health-care system might operate in the near future. As a result, we evaluated how our pharmacy service could respond to the impact that Covid-19 would have on the local community, as well as how we might best ensure that patients’ prescriptions would continue to be available.’
We contacted CDHN, and their help was vital in developing best-practice partnerships for patients, our pharmacy team, and volunteers. The service, which is now in its seventh week, has been a resounding success. We are able to locate housebound patients and bring their medicines to them quickly in a time of extraordinary change for the delivery of health and social care because of the lack of adequate roads in some of these communities; most crucially, mobility is another element that inhibits the effort.
Our system aids the pharmacy team in meeting evolving health-care demands, assists the most vulnerable members of the community, and strengthens partnerships with the broader community. Our Health Living Manager explained that we had noticed early on that people required assistance getting medicines from pharmacies, but that pharmacies were also under pressure as a frontline service in enabling people to stay healthy and manage sickness at home. Existing and new volunteers from other states stepped forward, and we were thrilled to lend our community organization’s support to this new program coordinated by WREI.