Lapalala Community Health Response

The Lapalala Community Health Response (LCHR) was established by the Lapalala Wilderness Foundation in 2022 in response to the healthcare challenges experienced by the communities around Lapalala.

Mashudu Makhokha and Peter Anderson reached out to a small group of doctors in the UK willing to initiate a pro-bono doctor service for these communities. A facility is in the process of being established at Lapalala’s Touchstone HQ which will house the doctors rooms.

During 2022 and 2023 Dr Iain Doig and Dr Isabella Falizewska (founding doctors) made visits to Lapalala and were later joined by Dr Sam Gunning and a health needs assessment was conducted in the three villages with interns from the Lapalala Wilderness School. The doctors have given up their time on a volunteer basis to initiate the project and to encourage doctors to volunteer to provide basic medical services to the community members.

We have also received a visit from Dr Pierre Quinodoz of the 2nd Chance Organisation and Dr Malika Quinodoz who have given some technical advice and are willing to assist with encouraging doctors from Switzerland and France to volunteer at Lapalala.

Medical Challenges

Local healthcare challenges were recorded in a Health Needs Assessment conducted in 2023. The focus of this assessment was a household survey with contributory information in the form of government data. The assessment highlights the prevalence of:

  1. Hypertension
  2. Diabetes
  3. Asthma
  4. Tuberculosis (TB)
  5. HIV and
  6. Substance / Alcohol Abuse

Practical Challenges

Local healthcare challenges reflect much wider medical and practical challenges in both South Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa. They are caused or at least exacerbated by:

  1. Poor access to local clinics and hospitals (μ distance 2.3 hrs and 3.1 hrs)
  2. Lack of network coverage
  3. High levels of unemployment
  4. Inadequate supply of medications
  5. Lack of affordable and reliable transport
  6. Lack of family planning, antenatal and childbirth healthcare

We Need Doctors

We are urgently looking for qualified doctors from all over the world to come and join our team on a pro bono basis.

Contact Peter Anderson