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Mobile Clinic: Caring for Health, Saving Forests

"Human health and environmental health are closely related and cannot be separated. If both are not healthy, then neither can be healthy." Dr. Kinari Webb, founder of Alam Sehat Lestari (ASRI). The concept of Planetary Health brings awareness to the close relationship between human health and nature in creating quality life for all of us. A healthy body gives us the strength and happiness to enjoy life, increase productivity, and prevent chronic disease. Meanwhile, a healthy nature provides vital resources such as clean air, fresh water, and a pollution-free environment that supports our physical and mental health. Therefore, maintaining human and natural health is an obligation for all of us.

ASRI has implemented the Planetary Health concept in real terms through health programs provided at the ASRI Clinic since 2017. This clinic is a forest conservation-based health clinic where the ASRI Clinic also encourages efforts towards forest conservation. One of the benefits that the community gets from health services at the ASRI Clinic is the option of non-cash payment using tree seeds such as Jengkol, Longan, Durian, Meranti, Ubah, and others. Then the tree seedlings given by the patient were planted in the forest area through a reforestation program. Apart from that, the ASRI Clinic also increases the reach of health services by visiting hamlets around Gunung Palung National Park and Bukit Baka Bukit Raya National Park which need health services along with forest conservation efforts.

 

Pasien berobat Klinik Keliling di Desa Jelundung, Sintang

 

Now, Jelundung Village and Rantau Malam Village, which are two supporting villages of the Bukit Baka Bukit Raya National Park (TNBBR), have become the locations for ASRI Clinic's new mobile clinic. On 6 to 7 July 2023, four health workers consisting of general practitioners, dentists and nurses provided free health services to the community in the two villages. Health services provided include general medicine, dental care, and distribution of reading glasses. The enthusiasm of the people who want to seek treatment and have their health checked is extraordinary. On average, the ASRI Clinic team receives around 100 patients during each visit in Jelundung Village and Rantau Malam Village.

 

Mrs. Herlina from Jelundung Village was very happy with the free medical services from ASRI. "How can I not be happy? Not only is this free, but there is also no need for transportation costs. After treatment, I can immediately return to work at home, and the medicine given is also suitable for me," he said after completing his health check.

 

Klinik Keliling di desa penyangga Taman Nasional Bukit Baka Bukit Raya, Desa Rantau Malam

 

Yohanes, a grade 10 student from Rantau Malam Village, also shared his experience regarding treating his cavities and the treatment he received from the ASRI Clinic mobile clinic. He also expressed his nervousness because this was his first experience of having treatment with a dentist. "I felt nervous when I had my teeth checked because this was my first experience of having treatment with a dentist. Apart from being given medicine, my teeth were also filled temporarily, and the dentist advised me to have further treatment in Serawai," said Yohanes.

 

The success of the mobile clinics in Rantau Malam Village and Jelundung Village for these two days was possible thanks to the support and assistance from the Gunung Palung National Park Center, Serawai Community Health Center, Sintang District Health Service, village officials, midwives, health cadres, and the entire community. Based on the results of discussions involving local community representatives, the need for health services in these two villages is very important. Therefore, ASRI Clinic is committed to providing mobile medical services in these two villages every two or three months for the next year. This decision is the result of a radical listening approach that was implemented in June and July 2023. Through this sustainable effort, ASRI Clinic hopes to continue providing affordable and quality health services to the community, while maintaining nature conservation and the balance of the surrounding ecosystem.