BRAZIL: Salesian University in Araçatuba launches hepatitis C testing and creates a new specialized clinic for outpatient needs
(MissionNewswire) The Salesian University (UniSalesiano), located in Araçatuba, Brazil, launched two important initiatives over the last few weeks. The first is hepatitis C testing for adults and the second is transforming a municipal emergency room into a specialized clinic.
Starting Aug. 23, students and teachers in the biomedicine department of the Salesian University began carrying out hepatitis C testing in adults. Identifying the disease is not easy as it only presents symptoms in an advanced stage. The Rotary Club of Araçatuba, which started a hepatitis C awareness campaign, provided 400 testing kits to the Salesian University. Professor Rossana Abud Cabrera Rosa stressed the project’s importance and invited the population to participate.
“This is an annual campaign, sponsored by the Rotary Club, to eradicate hepatitis C around the world,” said Rosa. Rosa, along with three other colleagues and trainees who are supervised by the Academic League of Clinical and Community Immunology, are administering the tests. “This type of action is very important for our academics because students learn to do the test, to read the result and to be in contact with the public. They also learned the operational procedures for the prevention of COVID-19,” she added.
Father Luigi Favero, rector of the Salesian University, explained that the work to convert the emergency room to a specialized clinic will be carried out in several steps. It will start with the reception and physiotherapy areas and then continue with outpatient areas for specialties. The new practice will house specialists in cardiology, dermatology, physiotherapy and much more.
Fr. Favero said, “The students, as early as the first week of the course, go to health facilities, so they gain experience and provide help. We want to provide space for training health workers and increase access to technology and infrastructure, so it was urgent to renovate this hospital. The most important thing we have is life, and the second is our health.”
The project has already been welcomed by Dilador Borges, the Araçatuba mayor, as well as by his secretary and the councilors for health. The first part of the new clinic will be made available in a few months. The aim is to inaugurate the entire clinic by February 2021.
Brazil has one of the strongest economies in Latin America and is an important agricultural and industrial power in the region. Just over 15 percent of Brazilians live in poverty, with the majority living in the rural northeast of the country, according to the World Bank. While Brazil is making positive changes, there are still large gaps between the poor and the rich, and issues of income inequality and social exclusion remain at the root of poverty.
Inequalities also exist in access to education and educational efficiency. These inequalities are greatest for children and youth who are poor, live in rural areas or who have an incomplete compulsory education. Salesian missionaries working with poor youth and their families in Brazil develop programs and provide youth opportunities for furthering their education and skills.
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Salesian Missions – Brazil
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