The study was carried out in cooperation with NewFields, which assigned one of its consultants, a physician and researcher at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute in Basel.
From November 14th to 21st, 2013, he travelled around Moyen-Ogooué to meet public health players, collect data and visit all the healthcare facilities in the study zone, i.e. two hospitals, a healthcare centre and six dispensaries.
This information led to an inventory of epidemiological data and existing health resources (facilities, physicians, nurses, etc.). This will be used to identify what information, equipment and infrastructures are lacking, and to guide healthcare programmes for Maboumine employees and local communities.
The progress of the health baseline study was closely followed by the Gabonese ministry of health and the environment and conservation authorities, which report to the country’s water and forest ministry. These bodies all belong to the workGroupe set up by Maboumine to share data on the subject.
As regards health, some actions have already been taken for employees on the Maboumine site, which is geographically quite isolated. The site has a medical outpost with two doctors on call in turn 24/7 for emergencies, general check-ups and preventive consultations, particularly for malaria and HIV. Furthermore, an ambulance is there for emergency action on work sites and if, necessary evacuation of injured or sick people, in addition to a helicopter dropping zone.