Boost for trucking wellness drive

first_imgTrucking Wellness is hoping to test 20 000people a year with the 10 new mobilecentres donated to them.(Image: CONTACTS• Zelma WilliamsTrucking Wellness+27 11 387 3424Nosimilo RamelaThe Trucking Wellness programme, which provides primary healthcare and HIV/Aids awareness to truck drivers along South Africa’s major routes, has received 10 more mobile centres.The clinics – made possible by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency, Mercedes-Benz South Africa, the South African Business Coalition on HIV/Aids (SABCOHA) and the National Bargaining Council for the Road Freight and Logistics Industry (NBCRFLI) – will provide screening for sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), HIV/Aids testing and counselling, and hand out antiretroviral drugs to long-distance truck drivers.The Trucking Wellness initiative was started in 1999 by the NBCRFLI in partnership with other public and private organisations committed to fighting the spread of HIV/Aids in the trucking industry.According to the organisation, the trucking industry is one of the hardest hit by HIV/Aids. There are approximately 70 000 truck drivers in South Africa, and an estimated 25% HIV/Aids prevalence rate within the trucking industry.In view of these statistics and the danger of losing drivers to diseases such as malaria, tuberculosis and HIV/Aids-related illnesses, it was vital to establish an accessible healthcare scheme such as the industry’s Trucking Wellness programme.Trevor Short, chairperson of NBCRFLI, which is part of the wellness programme, said the health of truck drivers in the country is crucial as 80% of goods in South Africa are transported by road.“To lose key personnel here would present a threat to the industry and to the national economy.”Kobus van Zyl, vice president of Mercedes Benz South Africa, another partner in the programme, agrees: “Imagine the impact on our economy if the spread of this disease was left unchecked in the trucking industry. Truck drivers in their thousands transport goods between suppliers and consumers or secondary manufacturers daily.”Short said the programme tested 2 330 employees in the year 2000, using just two mobile clinics. He said they were hoping to test 20 000 people a year with the 10 new mobile centres.“The Trucking Wellness programme is not glamorous, but it works,” he said.The mobile clinics will be situated at truck depots where drivers stop to get their trucks serviced while they are on their journey. The programme also operates 21 wellness centres staffed by registered nurses and counsellors, situated along the country’s major transport routes.Extending the reachBrad Mears, CEO of SABCOHA, said his coalition was also working on taking the Trucking Wellness programme across Southern Africa. “HIV/Aids is often viewed by the country’s neighbours as a huge snake with its head in South Africa.”SABCOHA provides project management and coordination services to the wellness programme.South Africa’s Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi has commended the programme and said the services would also be extended to women who may be at risk of contracting sexually transmitted infections from truckers.He added that the Department of Health was aware of the dangers that long-distance truck drivers were exposed to as a result of being away from their spouses for long periods. “It is important to provide our truck drivers with primary healthcare services, including counselling, to minimise the risks to themselves and their spouses,” he said.“I commend the South African Business Coalition on HIV/Aids for working with us in this regard.”last_img read more

Nokia’s Partnership With Microsoft Hurts More Than It Helps

first_imgRole of Mobile App Analytics In-App Engagement Tags:#Nokia#Windows Phone 8 Nokia has bet the company on Microsoft and its Windows Phone mobile operating system. That would be a risky but defensible bet… if Nokia was the only company making Windows Phones. Unfortunately for Nokia, other mobile manufacturers also vie for consumer attentions with Windows Phones, notably HTC and Samsung, two companies that have been directly responsible for Nokia’s overall fall from grace in the last few years. In many ways, Nokia’s partnership with Microsoft has hurt it as much as it has helped.(For more, see ReadWrite DeathWatch: Nokia.)When third-quarter smartphone shipment numbers were released last week, Nokia, for the first time, had fallen out of the top three manufacturers in the world. By research firm Strategy Analytics’ count, Nokia fell all the way to ninth!There are a variety of reasons for Nokia’s third-quarter disaster. The most obvious is that the competition has kept moving forward with new devices that enables them to sell their older versions at more affordable prices. For instance, Samsung’s strategy of releasing new devices almost every quarter make its quality long-tail offerings, like the Galaxy S II, attractive options to price-conscious buyers. In the U.S. market, Nokia does not have that long tail as its only available devices are the Lumias available from the likes of T-Mobile and AT&T – all of which were released earlier in 2012. But the biggest reason for Nokia falling behind in the smartphone race has been the lack of consumer interest, so far, in Windows Phones. Research firm IDC placed Windows Phone a pathetic fifth in the mobile operating system wars for the third quarter of 2012, witha paltry 3.5% of the market, far behind Android (68.1%) and iOS (16.9%) and even lagging BlackBerry (4.8%) and Nokia’s own dying Symbian platform (4.4%). Nokia Does Not Own Windows PhoneNokia may sell the lion’s share of Windows’s Phone’s 3.5%, but that adds up to only about 5.4 million units or so. And the competition within the Windows Phone world is only getting stiffer.HTC has two Windows Phones that are will be available this holiday shopping season, the 8S and 8X. Both devices are slim and attractive with uni-body designs, offer HTC-specific features like Beats Audio and are generally just quality pieces of hardware. If you were not paying a lot of attention, the 8S and 8X could definitely be mistaken for Nokia’s own Lumia 820 and 920 devices, scheduled for release in November. The difference between HTC and Nokia, though, is that HTC also has the well-designed and popular Android One series devices on top of its Windows Phone offerings. HTC has struggled against the likes of Samsung and Apple this year, but it still shipped 7.3 million smartphones in the third quarter, well above Nokia’s numbers. Exclusive Is Not Always A Good ThingThis is where Nokia gets hurt by its exclusive partnership with Microsoft. The mobile manufacturer is beholden to Microsoft’s release schedule for its Windows 8 platform, a project that has been in the works for three years and is just now being pushed out (along with a huge marketing campaign). Devices running Window Phone 7.5 “Mango” cannot be upgraded to the new Windows Phone 8 platform, thus turning all of Nokia’s Lumia devices from the past year in to lame ducks, just waiting to be phased out. While Nokia has a reputation for being slow in comparison to the primary Android manufacturers, Microsoft reputation is for being even slower. The combination has hurt Nokia more than it has Microsoft. The third quarter numbers are proof enough – but the real test to see how Nokia will fare will be seen during the holiday shopping period. In short, Nokia needs Microsoft a lot more than Microsoft needs Nokia. That relationship, at this point, is doing more harm than good for the future of the once-powerful Finnish brand.  dan rowinski Related Posts center_img The Rise and Rise of Mobile Payment Technology What it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech … Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaceslast_img read more