Feature Save the Children BMJ Christmas Appeal

Mobile clinics in Delhi

BMJ 2010; 341 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.c6800 (Published 30 November 2010) Cite this as: BMJ 2010;341:c6800
  1. Ganapati Mudur, journalist
  1. 1Delhi, India
  1. gsmudur{at}hotmail.com

For this year’s BMJ Christmas appeal we are working with Save the Children to raise £30 000 to help children and mothers in some of the world’s poorest regions. Money raised will be invested in projects such as the one described here by Ganapati Mudur

A mother with a baby in her arms tugs at the elbow of Madhu Jain, a doctor sitting inside a van that has been turned into a mobile clinic in northwest Delhi. It is parked in Holambi Kalan, an urban slum settlement where many brick houses have neither paint nor plaster, where narrow open drains run along the sides of houses, and where flies buzz over banana peels.

“Just one more—take only one more,” the mother pleads with the doctor. It was just past 1 pm and time for the van to leave for its second site of the day. Dr Jain allowed the mother to climb in, examined the child’s chest sounds and throat, prescribed paracetamol, and told the mother to watch out for signs of worsening illness. A pharmacist in the van handed over the medicine free of charge.

“The patients just keep coming—if we’re here all day, we’ll still get patients,” said Dr Jain, one of the two physicians in the mobile clinic …

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