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Floating clinic for islands

Torika Tokalau
Friday, July 04, 2014

GOOD news for villages in the Lau Group. The Sea Mercy Floating Health Clinic was launched yesterday in Suva and will be ready to service their islands from tomorrow.

The floating clinic, a $83,000 joint project by the villages in Lau, private sector and government, will service particularly the islands in the Lau Group as well as other maritime islands when the need arises.

Prime Minister Rear Admiral (Ret) Voreqe Bainimarama said he was excited about the project and its potential to deliver better health outcomes for ordinary people.

"A team of international volunteers has been assembled to work with personnel from the Ministry of Health on board the Sea Mercy vessels," he said.

"When they anchor at a particular island, they will of course bring with them an unprecedented capacity to deal with the rain of medical and dental complaints whether it is oral, eye care or treating common ailments and illness of any maritime community."

Vanuabalavu Hospital Board of Visitors chairman for Martin Livingston said the new service would benefit the people in Lau greatly.

"The basic services that will be provided to eight islands in Lau are towards children's health, education on issues like diabetes and smoking and of course other medical services," he said.

Founder of Sea Mercy Richard Tackett said they were happy to give help where it was needed.

"The need came out of personal visits to remote islands and understanding what is lacking, that there isn't an available service delivery platform to take it out there," Mr Tackett said.

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