TRIBAL HEALTH INITIATIVE, TAMIL NADU
Tribal Health Initiative is a public charitable trust located in the Sittilingi valley in Dharmapuri district, Tamil Nadu. The Tribal Health Initiative was started in 1993 by Dr. Regi George and Dr. LalithaRegi. Today, the registered charitable trust established in the small village of Sittilingi of the Dharmapuri District in Tamil Nadu, has more than thirty employees and works to improve the lives of the region’s tribal people through a variety of programs. It started with a small Out Patient Unit in a thatched hut. Three years later, mostly due to the support of friends and a few grants, they had built a ten bedded hospital with a rudimentary operation theatre, labour room, neonatal care, emergency room and laboratory.
Our vision is that the people of Sittilingi valley lead a better quality of life.
• To attain the highest possible level of physical, mental and social health.
• To enhance their socio-economic status while retaining their pride, self-respect and self-relianceand ensuring their active participation in programs meant for their welfare.
• To create an atmosphere highly conducive for the growth and development of local cultures and customs.
Today, Tribal Health Initiative runs a full-fledged 24 bed primary care hospital and has extended its services to conduct education programs and outreach clinics in the 21 villages situated in the area. The impact has been dramatic.
The proportion of pregnant mothers coming for antenatal check-ups has increased from 11 per cent to 90 per cent since the outreach clinics began. Newborn deaths have dropped by 50 per cent and the proportion of underweight five year olds has also dropped by 30 per cent over the same period.
WORK DONE BY THI :
THI views health as a state of mental, social and economic well-being and not the mere absence of disease. Their health interventions go beyond merely providing a curative and preventive medical service and they see their farming and craft initiatives to be directly connected to maintaining health in the region.
Broadly speaking the following are the activities of THI:
Tribal Hospital :
They run a 24 bed secondary level hospital which admits patients with medical, surgical and obstetric problems. The hospital serves as a base for their health outreach programme.
Health outreach programme :
Their health outreach programme provides simple curative, preventive and ambulance services to 21 villages in the Sittilingi