Monday, September 19, 2016

Heather B. GH '18, Community Health Project at Sargur


Heather (center) with roommates, Nayo (left) and Sarah, in the Saragur hospital dormitory.
This summer, I worked in the Department of Community Health at Vivekananda Memorial Hospital in Saragur, India. My project involved developing standard operating procedures for Chaitanya Vahini, a rehabilitation initiative that works with persons with disabilities. Chaitanya Vahini is three years old, and provides institutional, field, counseling, and special events services for adults and children with disabilities and their families. However, there was no set documented protocol of what goes on in each component of the program in detail.

I worked for two months gathering information, researching, pulling files, interviewing staff, observing appointments and going on field visits. After gathering all of the necessary information, I synthesized my findings into manuals describing the processes. I created a standard operating procedure for Hospital Services, one for Field Visits, and one for Residential Camps. These manuals ranged from 15 to 20 pages each and included a complete description of the program as well as a detailed timeline and explanation for the steps of each service.

Outside of my project, I also helped to create an analytical data report based on a school health screening. Furthermore, I created a motivational poster for parents, and compiled a document of staff suggestions and my own brainstormed ideas of future success of Chaitanya Vahini.


My project manuals were printed soon after I left and will be available in the Community Health Office for anyone who needs to learn more about the initiative. They will also be shared with new employees and future interns working with Chaitanya Vahini. I thoroughly enjoyed working on my project as it equally balanced research, observation, interviewing, and creation. I appreciated the opportunity of getting a comprehensive overview of the hospital services offered through Chaitanya Vahini, interacting with patients and their families, and getting to communicate with many staff members inside and outside of VMH.

Heather assists with child weight measurements at Sargur Hospital.

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