Interview with: Emilia Albino Chilaule, Técnica de Medicina Preventiva, Centro de Saúde de Alto Changane, Distrito de Chibuto – A health worker who works in a health center served by the DLS.
How has this new supply chain system improved your clinic?
The first benefit we saw from the dedicated logistics system (DLS), or the new system, is that mothers started trusting the program, as now we have vaccines available every day. So now the patients come every day, because they know that they will find vaccines. This system solved the problems of stock out of vaccines, as most of the time (before the DLS) I didn’t have money to travel and get “chapa” (public transport) to go to the district to collect vaccines.
Second, the DLS has reduced the frequent occurrence that a patient might to come to look for vaccines and not find a health worker. Sometimes when I went to collect vaccines, on our way back to the health unit, “chapa” would break on the way and delay us, taking me away from the health unit more (it could be hours or a day).
With DLS, I spend more time in the health unit, and I have more time to do PAV (vaccination) work, as I don’t have to travel to collect vaccines at the district. Going to the district used to take me a lot of time, and was a cost for me because I had to pay “chapa” with my own money.
I am happy with DPS bringing vaccines here. It is a good thing because I come to work and I don’t have to worry. I know that vaccines will arrive with DPS, and I just have to do my job which is to vaccinate children, starting at 7am when I arrive, until I vaccinate the last child. The mothers are happy, too, because they know that there are vaccines and they will find me here working.
When I was working alone in this health unit, when I traveled to collect vaccines, I had to shut down the health unit, but now we are two people working here, and I don’t have to shut it down.
Before the DLS system, how many hours each week (or how many days each month) did you spend away from the health facility picking up vaccines?
Normally we use to collect vaccines at a monthly basis. Vaccines deposit at the District Sede, 70Km away from here. I have to catch “chapa” at 6am and be back at the end of the day around 9pm. The chapa takes around 4 hours to arrive at the District Sede (this when is not raining and the roads are transitable). But sometimes the “chapa” use to break and I would have tostay for 2 days at the District Sede because there is still only one “chapa” available in this area.