Vaccine Fridge Donation will Assist with Child Health
Provincial Health Minister, Theuns Botha, will today receive a vaccine fridge, valued at R20 000, from Mr. Peter Hurst, sales and marketing director at refrigeration firm, Minus40. Minus40 is a specialist manufacturer of refrigeration products for the medical and hospitality industries.
Vaccine fridges are specialised pieces of equipment that require extremely accurate temperature control. The fridge has a ninty (90) litre capacity and stores thirty six (36) litres of vaccine, and can also freeze ice-packs. Vaccines must be stored at exactly 2 - 6 degrees otherwise the vaccine dies and becomes ineffective. In the case of a power failure the fridge has a hold-over time of six hours. These fridges are checked twice a day to ensure that the correct temperature is maintained, thereby prolonging the shelf life of the vaccine.
Khayelitsha Site B Community Health Centre (CHC) was selected as the beneficiary because the clinic is responsible for the highest daily number of vaccinations. During the 2009/2010 financial year, the centre immunised almost one thousand eight hundred (1800) babies less than 1 year old. During the recent measles outbreak, Khayelitsha was also the place with the highest number of reported measles cases.
Khayelitsha is the sub-district with the highest mortality rate in the Western Cape - 34.85 per 1000 live births. This number is still much lower than the national average. Trends in mortality indicators show that the national figure for infant deaths in their first year is forty eight (48) per one thousand (1000) live births, while the Western Cape figure is twenty six (26). The national figure for child deaths before 5 years is seventy three (73) per one thousand (1000), while the Western Cape figure is thirty nine (39). HIV Aids and social and health service related factors have the greatest impact on these figures.
Additional notes about Khayelitsha Site B CHC:
- The facility manager is Ms. Fundiswa Notshe
- There is a staff compliment of over two hundred (200)
- The CHC sees thirty thousand (30 000) - forty thousand (40 000) patients per month
- Services offered include emergency care, TB/HIV care, outpatient care and obstetrics