Balance: Operation to Combat COVID-19 at DSEI Maranhão completes more than 22K services
The strategy of the Federal Government to provide health care to indigenous people during the pandemic caused by COVID-19 in the Indigenous Special Sanitary District (DSEI) Maranhão carried out more than 22,000 consultations directly in the villages between the months of September and November this year. The Combat Operation COVID-19 of the Special Indigenous Health Secretariat (SESAI) of the Ministry of Health, carried out more than 19,000 consultations with the support of the Ministry of Defense and more than 3,300 consultations with the support of the SESAI Mobile Health Team in the District. The objective was to bring reinforcement to the health professionals of the DSEI Maranhão who work in indigenous areas. The first three phases of the Operation took place from September 14 to October 5, and recently the fourth phase took place from November 3 to 8.
During the pandemic, the indigenous people were guided by SESAI to stay in their communities and avoid contact with urban centers, which generated a demand for medical consultations with specialists. In these missions, SESAI has sent reinforcement of general practitioners, pediatricians, gynecologists, nurses and nursing technicians who perform multiple health services in support of the DSEI. The mobilization and triage of patients is carried out by the Indigenous Multidisciplinary Teams (EMSI) of the District Base Pole, formed mainly by Indigenous Health Agents (AIS) who live in the villages, act as interpreters and monitor the health of patients.
During the 4th phase of the operation rapid tests were performed for COVID-19, diabetis, hepatitis and other diseases. Pressure gauging, vaccination update, dental appointment, preventive exams of women and health monitoring of elderly, children and pregnant women were also performed. The consultations took place in Basic Indigenous Health Units (UBSI), schools, community centers and local centers organized by the community to serve the local community and the neighboring villages of the Base Poles of Barra do Corda, Grajaú and Amarante.
"These patients would have to go to the city and queue up for consultations with specialists, but we were able to carry out the consultations right here. We had nursing care, rapid tests for Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs), medical consultations and general guidance for the entire population. This partnership of the steering team with the Base Poles teams really came to complement the work, it is a help for all the teams," evaluates the coordinator of the Steering Health Team of SESAI, Danielle Gomes.
His 81-year-old Raimundo Ribeiro Guajajara is the founding chief of the village Jenipapo dos Ribeiros, in the Arariboia Indigenous Land, near Bom Jesus das Selvas (MA). He says he founded the village in 2006 and this was the first time that there was a health change in the place, because when there is a need the population goes to the nearest UBSI for assistance. The indigenous leaders, together with the National Indigenous Foundation (FUNAI), the Brazilian Army and the Maranhão Military Police, organized health barriers to prevent the entry of people who were not from the villages and to guide the residents regarding COVID-19. He did not leave the village for six months and when he tested for COVID-19, the result was negative. "This action was very important, we really needed this force of doctor and doctor who came. It freed us from having to go to the city, to hospital, with so much bad stuff that is happening, for me it was too important," he says.
Eva Krikati, from the village of São José, in the Krikati Indigenous Land, tells that she had felt a lot of pain in her lower back and took the opportunity to consult during the joint effort held in her village. "We came for a back consultation, for rib treatment. I was well attended, I have been feeling this pain for a long time and taking homemade medicine, it did not work, so you have to go to the doctor to see if there is a remedy to relieve it".
The Mobile Health Team of SESAI performed 62 referrals to health specialists from other areas during the action. There were 489 tests for IST, all with negative results, and 460 tests for COVID-19, with 34 positive cases. "In addition to receiving the drugs to treat the symptoms, the positive cases for COVID-19 received guidance for isolation and did not need to be removed, because the symptoms are mild, but will be closely followed by nurses and nursing technicians in the area," explains the coordinator of DSEI Maranhão, Alberto Goulart.
This is the second mission carried out by the Mobile Health Team of SESAI. The first mission took place at the DSEI Leste de Roraima, from October 19 to 26, and performed 5.4 thousand consultations. The next mission of the team is to take reinforcement to the DSEI Kayapó do Mato Grosso, from November 15 to 21.