Abstract 11 - Beat COVID; Don't Panic (United Christian Nethersole Community Health Service)
Project title: Beat COVID; Don’t Panic
Background: At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic in late 2019, there were many rumours and misinformation. Elderly people and ethnic minorities were particularly vulnerable as they had reduced access to up to date information. There was much panic in these communities.
Objective: To reach out to these groups in a rapid manner to provide scientific information about the disease, dispel myths and rumours, allay unfounded fears and improve people’s knowledge and ability to maintain good hygiene and protective practices.
Program content: Using our existing community networks, we made direct in-person visits to households to deliver health education and a free hygiene pack. Option of self-collection in our health centres. The education focused on 5 key areas – 1) hand hygiene, 2) respiratory hygiene, 3) environmental hygiene, 4) diet and stress management and 5) advice on when to seek medical help, quarantine rules. During this period, we have reached over 4500 non-Chinese ethnic minorities and adults, and 1000 elderlies approximately. 30 educational leaflets were produced and distributed to the ethnic minority community and general citizens; 4500 people received the educational information. 3000 people received COVID-19 anti-epidemic package. In addition, we conducted 681 telephone calls to elderly living alone to provide similar health messages and to answer questions.
Summary of the findings/observation: After completion of the distribution of the hygiene package and dissemination of educational leaflets, phone follow up evaluation was conducted. Amongst the respondents 97% agree/strongly agreed that the educational information and COVID -19 anti-epidemic package was useful and timely.
Describe the application: All the educational leaflets were delivered through WhatsApp or anti-epidemic package. The educational information was also published in ethnic minority newspaper. COVID-19 anti-epidemic package had been delivered to their home through clinics or by the volunteers. One EM newspaper published two articles.