Community Based Rehabilitation (CBR) in the Ministry of Health says it acknowledged complaints a person with disability raised against the organisation recently.
Guadalcanal man Edwin Kuba has claimed CBR failed to respond positively to his request for assistance.
He said he registered with CBR in 2014 but since then they’ve provided him with no help despite requests he put with them.
“I visited the office and tell them my needs but they were not helpful,” he claimed.
Kuba was not born a disabled man.
Instead, he suffered from fire burns and broken bones, which left him to use scratches to move around.
He was unable to do anything and as a disabled person he was kept at the Good Samaritan Hospital in northeast Guadalcanal.
Responding to Kuba’s complaints, CBR national coordinator Elsie Taloafiri said her organisation thanked Kuba for his public complaints.
But she explained in the Ministry of Health and Medical Services, there are five departments under the Rehabilitation Division.
These include: Physiotherapy; Occupational Therapy; Speech Therapy; Rehabilitation Workshop; and CBR.
“The first four are hospital-based departments and CBR is a community-based program,” Taloafiri said.
She said the major function of CBR is to promote the independence, rehabilitation, equalisation of opportunities and inclusion of all people with disabilities.
The World Health Organization defines a disability as “any restriction or lack (resulting from any impairment) of ability to perform an activity in the manner or within the range considered normal for a human being”.
Taloafiri said the CBR program takes on the continued care of acute patients who have acquired or were born with permanent disabilities.
Defining CBR in its simple terms is:
· Community Based means that the worker goes to the client’s home and community.
· Rehabilitation means returning of ability or helping a person with disability to manage better at home and in the community.
She said the role of the national CBR office is to supervise and coordinate provincial services; coordinate training for CBR field officers, purchase and distribute adaptive equipment upon request from provincial programs, registers persons with disabilities and those that are high at risk of acquiring disability.
CBR also oversees the implementation of disability policy, and liaise with other government ministries and non-government organisations, including the private sector, to promote the inclusion of persons with disabilities the services that they provide.
Taloafiri added the provincial program is responsible for implementing home therapy (exercises and activities), providing adaptive equipment, providing assessment and information on home accessibility (toilet, swim area, bed and house), educating families and caregivers on disability prevention and promotion, empowering persons with a disability to maximise their potential, helping village communities to understand how to include and enable people with disabilities to play an active role in their community, and promoting the rights of people with disabilities.
“Any support requested outside of these areas is beyond the capacity of the program. This includes welfare payments.
“CBR works to empower people with disabilities, not to see himself or herself as a person with a disability but as an abled-bodied person that can use their ability to live as anyone in the community and enjoy their life to the fullest with support from their families and community.
“CBR’s mandate will always be to deliver the services required, along with stakeholders, in accordance with the resources available, and will continue to be open to discuss issues of concern in the best interests of effective and efficient service delivery.
“CBR is more than willing to meet with Mr Kuba to discuss this in more detail,” Taloafiri said.