4 March 2017 – A group of IMU Pharmacy students made a visit to Rumah Sejahtera Seri Setia (RSSS) led by an experienced project leader, Dr Jithendra Panneerselvam. This project was supervised by lecturers from School of Pharmacy, Medicine and Dentistry. The main purpose of this visit is to update the elderly regarding their current health status in IMU Healthcare‘s records. This was a follow-up visit with great effort devoted by a group of enthusiastic students to ensure the sustainability of the project. Rumah Sejahtera Seri Setia is a non-governmental old folks home located at Sungai Way, Petaling Jaya. The home was officially established in 1966 by Tun Abdul Razak, the deputy prime minister at the time. The home now depends on the generosity of donors to sustain their daily operations. In 2016, a batch of pharmacy students offered a new approach to build a foundation of healthcare services at this home with the primary purpose of allowing continuous medical follow-ups and health screening check-ups for the elderly. To achieve the purpose of this visit, basic healthcare screening, follow-up of medical records and personalised consultation were provided with the help of GPs. For new residents in the home, relevant medical information were obtained and recorded. The health screening comprised of history taking, blood pressure measurement, blood glucose measurement, body mass index measurement and dental check-up as well as a consultation session with GP. The elderly in RSSS were reviewed by the physician on their current complaints and medication at hand to allow the elderly to present their problems and provide essential information for the GP. Records obtained were presented to the GP shortly after the dental check-up for review and compared to available case notes of the elderly in the past one year. The translators assigned to each station did a superb job in breaking down the language barrier with the elderly, particularly during the consultation session. By providing students an insight into the elderly’s past and present medical records, the elderly who need medical attention will be referred to IMU Healthcare. In addition to health screening, the students have thoughtfully prepared some activities for the elderly such as Chinese Chess and Calligraphy with intention of encouraging interaction between the students and the elderly. The visit ended with a lunch session sponsored by IMU Cares. All the students and staffs had a memorable time with the elderly. “It was a great exposure for the pharmacy students to see how a physician perform history taking and how to make an impression. This also encouraged inter-professional learning among all of us. I would like to say thank you to all of the personnel who volunteered in this project.” Cheong Weng Tzun, Chairperson of this project. This project was initiated to provide care to the elderly, on top of that it consolidated soft skills among student while encouraging inter-professional collaboration between healthcare professionals.
Through this project, the elderly were able to gain a better understanding of their respective health conditions. The personalised consultation seeded the importance of a healthy lifestyle management thus encouraging them to take responsibility in preserving their quality of life.
The students were grateful to be part of this project and looking forward to contribute more towards the betterment of society.
Written by: Hii Wee Nah, Sharon Loke Huey Ann, Haw Yong Hong