Preserving Dignity and Encouraging Treatment Compliance in the Public Health Care System
BHCC reaches out to State hospital and clinic patients who are severely disadvantaged, unemployed or unemployable, often homeless and so strapped of funds that they cannot afford basic hospital necessities like a toothbrush or a washcloth. Typically they do not have any family support. Government health care funding cannot stretch to cover their basic needs. All BHCC beneficiaries are injured or sick, many chronically, with diseases like AIDS and/or TB. In some of the extremely underprivileged areas where BHCC operates, a significant portion of the patients reporting to clinics are so malnourished that they are classified as being at the marasmus and kwashiorkor (“wasting”) stages of malnutrition. In Alexandra township, the severe malnutrition rate is over 50% (nutritionist: Alexandra Health Clinic). The communities we serve also suffer from high unemployment (well over 50 percent in some areas), and high rates of crime. In some areas, rape (even of small children and young female AIDS orphans) is being routinely reported.
- Programs: 1) Hospital Necessities; 2) Bread for Life; 3) Transportation Grants; 4) Projects
- Beneficiaries: approximately 600 000 patients, almost all from disadvantaged communities, newborns to the elderly; up to 25% of beneficiaries are children (depending on programme and location), including AIDS orphans.
- State Hospitals Served: (5) Chris Hani Baragwanath; Charlotte- Maxeke; South Rand; Rahima Moosa; Helen Joseph
- Medical Clinics: (11 principal, 12+ auxiliary) Eleven principal clinics in Soweto, West Rand, Alexandra, South Rand & Johannesburg Metro area; auxiliary clinics served indirectly, via principal clinics.
- Geographic Area Served: Greater Johannesburg Metro area including Soweto, West Rand and occasionally East Rand.
- Management : 11-20 Member volunteer Executive Committee manages all programmes and works closely with over 50 staff at State hospitals and clinics, including Assistant Directors, Doctors, Nurses, Social Workers, and Therapists