In Jamaica, bus and taxi drivers get free health check-up

In Jamaica, bus and taxi drivers get free health check-up

Jun 01, 2017
Mandeville, Jamaica

In Jamaica, bus and taxi drivers get free health check-up

[photo credit: Nigel Coke/Inter-America Division]

Bus and taxi drivers were the beneficiaries of free health check-ups last weekend during a “Know Your Numbers” health drive organized by the Three Angels Pharmacy. The health fair was done with support from members of some local Seventh-day Adventist Churches, health agencies and companies in Mandeville, Jamaica on May 27 and 28.  

Two hundred and forty of the approximately 400 people registered were bus and taxi drivers who received the opportunity to be tested for their body mass index (BPI), blood glucose, cholesterol and blood pressure. They clinic also offered eye exams and HIV testing. Healthy lifestyle and general counseling, along with prayers, were offered for those who requested it. A volunteer medical doctor was also available. 

“In general, the concern is that most of the persons who came were hypertensive,” said retired Nurse Leonie Bailey. Many were also pre-diabetic based on their numbers, she added. 

“They need to make lifestyle changes in order to correct the current trajectory,” explained Bailey. “They need more rest, exercise, a diet with more fruits and vegetables and also to trust in the God.”

Seventh-day Adventist entrepreneur and owner of Three Angels Pharmacy Rohan McNellie felt satisfied that he, along with the team of volunteers, did their best to share the love of Jesus through his recently launched mobile clinic. 

The idea of this outreach to the men and women who are responsible for transporting members of the public came about when a taxi driver friend of McNellie died suddenly a few months ago. “It struck me that maybe if he knew his ‘numbers’ he could have made the necessary change to his lifestyle and could have been alive today,” said McNellie. 

“It is very important that people be made aware of their health conditions, and I know many of these drivers are so busy, they will not find the time to do health check-ups until it is too late,” added McNellie.  “So this is my gift to the community, because I want all of us to be in good health.” 

Mayor of Mandeville, Counselor Donovan Mitchell, who also checked his numbers in the park on Saturday, commended the Seventh-day Adventist Church for reaching out to this special sector of the business community in Mandeville. 

“What I see here today is the epitome of Adventism knowing that a number of known Adventists are out here doing what they have to do on the Sabbath, which is doing what the Lord said in Matthew 25:40 ‘Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, you have done it unto me’,” said Mayor Mitchell. “It is not just about church-going, but about what you have to do to help humanity,” he added. “I am sure the taxi men and the general public are appreciative of what is being done by the Church”. 

“This is a marvelous initiative, I love this”, exclaimed taxi driver of more than 20 years, Garfield Preddie. “It helps me to know my body status and put me on my “Ps and Qs” to correct the areas that are not in line with good healthy norms.” 

The Mandeville Police Department has asked assistance from the Three Angels Pharmacy Mobile Clinic for their upcoming health drive. 

Since its launch in March 2017, the Three Angels Pharmacy Mobile Clinic has served free medical check-up to several communities in Manchester, Trelawny St. Ann and Clarendon. More health screenings are schedule for the coming weeks.

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