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WBCG launch Roadside Wellness Clinic in Keetmanshoop

Posted: 8 Dec 2021

The Walvis Bay Corridor Group (WBCG) continues to contribute significantly to the wellness of mobile populations in the transport and logistics industry.

The WBCG  recently partnered with the Ministry of Health and Social Services (MoHSS), Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) and Engen Namibia to ensure that truck drivers have access to comprehensive health and wellness services along the Trans Oranje Corridor.

Friday, 3 December 2021 marked the official launch of WBCG’s Roadside Wellness Clinic at the Engen 1 Stop Service Station in Keetmanshoop. The clinic is aimed at providing comprehensive health care services, amongst others HIV testing, counselling and treatment as well as Covid-19 testing and vaccination. The services will be accessible to the vulnerable populations (mainly truck drivers and sex workers). The addition of this new clinic will bring the number of WBCG’s Roadside Wellness Clinics to a total of seven (7), creating a comprehensive footprint on all the Walvis Bay Corridors.

According to WBCG’s Wellness Service Manager, Mr. Edward Shivute, WBCG is constantly looking for opportunities to expand its network of roadside wellness clinics across the country. This model is quick to set up and it provides practical and seamless health solutions to our vulnerable communities. Furthermore, these new clinics will enable us to increase our reach and boost the number of people that are accessing the much needed health services in all our regions.

Providing high quality services and growing our footprint remains our priority whilst working on keeping HIV positivity rates within the transport and logistics sector below 10%. The WBCG, along with its members, contributed considerably to keeping the transmission rates of Covid-19 within the transport and logistics sector below 10%, remarked Mr. Shivute.

He further added, “In order to reduce HIV infections and mitigate its impact on mobile populations and affected communities, we are constantly venturing towards improving the access to services for key populations such as female sex workers, adolescent girls and young women and mobile populations specifically long-distance truck drivers and the surrounding border communities in Namibia.” These are the groups of people that will help the country reach epidemic control, hence the urgent need to target them. The WBCG services are however still available to other target groups as per the National Strategic Framework on HIV/AIDS Response in Namibia that is spearheaded by the Ministry of Health and Social Services (MoHSS).

The Roadside Wellness Clinic was launched by the Governor of the //Kharas Region, Honourable Aletha Frederick. The event was also graced by Her Worship Councillor Maree Smith, the Mayor of Keetmanshoop, who joined the Governor in applauding the addition of the new health facility to the town.

Speaking at the same event, Honourable Aletha Frederick, applauded the WBCG for their great initiatives and efforts in providing wellness services to vulnerable communities in the region. “We have long affirmed that the fight against HIV/AIDS and now Covid-19, should be approached as a collective effort, and we are thankful to the Walvis Bay Corridor Group, the Ministry of Health and Social Services and GIZ for taking such a noble initiative to establish this Wellness Clinic in our region. As you can see, this clinic is strategically located on the Trans Oranje Corridor, to target the most vulnerable and hard-to-reach key populations. I am convinced that this clinic will serve its purpose and will be fully utilized by providing the much-needed access to treatment and health services, while simultaneously supporting other health facilities in the region, including the Keetmanshoop State Hospital.”

The governor further empathized the importance of public health as a right for all citizens.

The WBCG appreciates the support from the MoHSS, GIZ Namibia, Engen Namibia as well as its members, partners and industry stakeholders who are pushing to ensure the wellbeing of the truck drivers and other vulnerable populations.