Posted on 15th Sep 2016
Professor Anba Soopramanien was the guest of the Chinmaya Mission of Beau-Bassin, last week, speaking on neurological disorders. He made a presentation on the action it proposes to take in Mauritius in the field of neurological rehabilitation and will come with a multidisciplinary team very soon. The approach of the Mauritian living abroad regarding the care of people with paralysis occurred after spinal cord injury, head trauma or stroke. The audience included members of the public, patients affected by these problems as well as health professionals.
What is the purpose of your visit to Mauritius?
The purpose of my visit to Mauritius is twofold. I came first to propose solutions to improve the lives of those suffering from paralysis of neurological origin, and secondly for my vacation. My visit aims to offer solutions to the problems I have identified the neurological rehabilitation through my contacts in Mauritius. When a person is injured spinal cord or brain injury, we find a correct management in the acute stage. However, after the acute stage and when that person returns home, this support is not the same. That's why I decided to come soon with a multidisciplinary team for rehabilitation neurology. We saw patients at home and in the hospital, and found that there is a huge problem with the management of sequelae of paralysis: bladder disorders, saddles, motors or sensitivity and bedsores.
What are the gaps that you noted in Mauritius that prevent people with disabilities to live normally?
First, the medical management of sequelae of paralysis. Second, the attitude of people. If some good will, it is unfortunate that we take for disabled persons of a lower category. It all starts at home. We must remove the barriers that prevent the mobility of the disabled. Sidewalks will also be reviewed so that those who use wheelchairs have not difficult movements. This lack in awareness is a real problem.
You talked about the problems of wheelchairs available for the disabled. How these facilities, said to improve lives affected, they make their more trouble?
Existing wheelchairs are not always suitable for people suffering from neurological disorders. I think we still have much to do about it. These wheelchairs we see in Mauritius have no cushion. The bars to support the arm can not be separated and it is difficult to transfer patients when necessary. It is time in wholesales wheelchairs to the physical configuration of the country. I also note that some people do not know how to care for a disabled person.
Do you think that there is an awareness of neurological disorders?
It must be that people are beginning to realize neurological sequelae disorders. I do not think these suffering people seeking pity. Rather, we must have compassion for them. We must not consider these people as burdens, but we need to find solutions for them. In addition, the layout of the space at home - doors, access to the bathroom or the toilet - and across the country (private or public buildings, sidewalks) does not promote the independence of the disabled. I think through an awareness campaign, people will not deviate difficulties faced by disabled people in their daily lives. There is a technique, a science to help these people. We must use the small as the great ways to get disabled their situation. In this sense, I intend to organize a one-day conference with my colleagues on the management of people with disabilities.
Do you think we have enough therapists to Mauritius to take care of the disabled?
We do not have many therapists, particularly in the neurotherapy in Mauritius. Always physiotherapists working with occupational therapists, social workers and doctors within a multidisciplinary team.
You plan to open an institution in Mauritius for the disabled. Could you tell us more?
A nonprofit organization (NERA-UK) is in the Making in Britain with a branch in Mauritius which will be called NERAM (Neuro-Rehabilitation Action Mauritius). The action that the association intends to conduct includes improved medical care, accident prevention, specific initiatives to improve the space and promote a better quality of life for disabled people. It will address in priority to the training of trainers and organize conferences / workshops for industry experts.