Mdzananda has a mobile clinic that comes to the community to heal its pets. (Image: Mdzananda Animal Clinic)An animal clinic running from six recycled shipping containers treats dogs and cats from a community of over 1.5 million people without help from the City of Cape Town.Mdzananda Animal Clinic is the only veterinary council registered animal clinic in Khayelitsha, a township just outside Cape Town. Mdzananda – meaning distemper in the local isiXhosa dialect – was established in 1996 to treat animals without access to veterinary care in the fast growing impoverished community.In the spirit of the clinics ethos – community upliftment through animal health care – the clinic offers sterilization, dipping, deworming and vaccination as primary veterinary healthcare services. Sick or injured pets can also be brought in for consultations, hospitalisation and theatre operations for sick and injured animals.For those too far from the clinics improvised home, a daily mobile clinic travels around the sprawling township to care for pets in need, or too sick to be brought to the hospital. The service runs every afternoon during the week, and includes home visits by staff to educate the community about the work Mdzananda does.According to the Dog Trust, a third of the households in Khayelitsha fall below the poverty line. Poverty, unemployment and lack of education makes an investment in veterinary care rare. Social issues make it difficult for the community to care for their pets so finding animals suffering from disease and untreated injuries was a common sight.The Dog Trust, the International Fund for Animal Welfare, BCL Medical Waste Management, Ashworth Africa Tours and Safaris, Revelstone, Malls Tiles, Norpharm, and, Nestle Purina, are organisations that have funded Mdzananda in its quest to help the animals of Khayelitsha.You can also donate to Mdzananda by checking for their banking details here.Jane Levinson, project manager at Mdzananda, said: “I’ve been volunteering for Mdzananda since March 1997, almost from the start of the project. As project manager my job is overall coordination of Mdzananda, and I’m also responsible for fund raising and public relations.“I’ve been privileged to see Mdzananda grow from a tiny animal welfare project that had no water or electricity, to providing Khayelitsha with a full time professional animal welfare service that has helped over 50 000 pets since 1996.”STOPPING A DEADLY DISEASEIn 2010, an emergency vaccination drive was launched to save Khayelitsha dogs from an outbreak of the deadly canine parvovirus.During that time a serious outbreak of Parvovirus in the Somerset West, Strand and Gordon’s Bay area’s was detected which meant that it was only a matter of time before the disease spreads to nearby Khayelitsha.Levinson hailed vaccine manufacturer Intervet and distributor Norpharm for contributing to the fight by slashing the price of the vaccine by half.She said: “We are extremely grateful to them both. Their generosity has been key to us getting this emergency relief exercise off to a swift start, meaning we can start protecting dogs before Parvovirus actually takes hold in Khayelitsha.”PROJECTSBeyond the primary services Mdzananda runs several projects that serve to look after Khayelitsha’s cats and dogs. They run spay campaigns; kennel building; sustainable gardening and a volunteer programme.Khayelitsha residents are encouraged to have their pets spayed, a service offered free at Mdzananda. During the campaign Mdzananda, staffed by volunteer veterinarians, can sterilize up 100 animals in a single day. Mdzananda organises “kennel building” events for their staff so that they get together with the community to build and decorate kennels from scrap wood. You too can organise your “kennel building” along with Mdzananda by contacting them on +27 21 367 2302 /4091.The clinic also has its very own vegetable garden that helps in making soup during the cold Cape winter.
Are you a military service provider or caregiver to a family member whose medical coverage falls under Medicaid? Are you unsure how their coverage may be affected by the Affordable Care Act? In today’s caregiving post we take a brief look at the impact the Affordable Care Act has on Medicaid.The Affordable Care Act (ACA) allows states to expand Medicaid based on the percentage of the federal poverty level. About half of the U.S. has opted to do this as of early 2015. These states have expanded Medicaid eligibility to adults earning up to 138 percent of the federal poverty level.The ACA also creates incentives for states to further develop Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) and to incorporate the programs into their state Medicaid programs, making services more widely available. HCBS are provided under federal waivers that allow states to provide services to qualified individuals. As a result, the scope of services may be limited, the populations served may be specified, and the approval to operate the waiver time may be limited. Medicaid is and remains a federal-state program that is administered by state governments.To learn more about Medicaid check out our Medicaid and Military Families: An Introduction training.Have a question for our military caregiving team? Let us know! We want to hear from you.
The Chhattisgarh Cabinet has approved the nomination of at least one differently abled member to each panchayat, if not elected, making it the only State to have such members in all panchayats. “Differently abled people constitute 6% of the population of Chhattisgarh. As promised in the jan ghoshna patra [manifesto], we have taken the landmark step of strengthening their voices at the grassroots level,” said T.S. Singh Deo, State Panchayati Raj Minister. ‘Elected or nominated’“Every panchayat will now have differently abled members, either elected or nominated,” he said. If differently abled members are not elected through the electoral process, then one member, either male or female, would be nominated as a panch. And as for janpads and zilla panchayats, the State government would nominate two such members, one male and one female, to them. During a meeting at the house of Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel, the Cabinet approved the amendment to the State Panchayat Raj Act, 1993. The proposals will be tabled in the Vidhan Sabha, where the Congress holds 68 of the 90 seats. This means, said Mr. Deo, the State would have 11,000 people with special needs as members of panchayats. “We strongly believe that no one should be left behind. We are committed to empowering the common people. This is the top most priority of the Congress government in Chhattisgarh.” Meanwhile, the Cabinet also decided to drop the educational qualifications eligibility criterion for contesting panchayat elections. “It is mandatory for a contestant for the position of a panch to be at least a Class V pass, and above that Class VIII pass. In the three-tier panchayati raj system, only being literate would be enough to contest elections,” said a note from the government.