Primary Health Care as defined by the World Health Organization in 1978 is: essential health care; based on practical, scientifically sound, and socially acceptable method and technology; universally accessible to all in the community through their full participation; at an affordable cost; and geared toward self-reliance and self-determination (WHO & UNICEF, 1978).
South Africa’s health system consists of a large public sector and a smaller but fast-growing private sector. The funders / clients to UH in this sector is mostly the medical aids and the corporate companies wanting to offer primary health care services to their members or employees. Corporate companies see the value of PHC programme due to a decrease in absenteeism due to sick leave and permanent disability. Medical Aids on the other hand see the value in that if a member manages their health, the potential admission cost in hospital would be a lot less.
UH understands that the availability of funding differs, but the principle of primary health care to prevent decease and to keep individuals as healthy as possible, by identifying health risks in time and addressing it as soon as possible.
UH has developed different services to different organisations, typical PHC initiatives would be (if not a fully equipment PHC clinic, with basic dispensing according to scope of practice from the Department of Health SA):
- Contraceptive Clinics
- Breast Examination Workshops
- Basic Health Risk assessments for chronic conditions like, diabetes mellitus, hyperlipedeamia, hypertension etc.
- TB Screening
- HIV Screening and management (HIV educational workshops can also be organised to address stigma and motivate testing and compliance to treatment plans)
- Vaccinations and immunisations
A very important part of PHC is the Case Management of those individuals who has identified potential or real risk to their health. UH has built the capacity and knowledge to offer case management programmes, to assist clients to find the best, most affordable primary care option available to them.
- Screening & Diagnostics
- Clinics On & Off Site
- Awareness & Education
- Health Risk Assessment
- Chronic and Non-Chronic disease management
- Family Planning
- HIV / AIDS – VCT Testing & Treatment