Nsanje health personnel urged to be professional
By Rodrick Katuka
Nsanje district commissioner Dr Medson Matchaya has asked health workers in the district to be professional in order to diligently provide health care services to the communities.
He made the sentiments on wesday during an interface meeting with Malemia Area Development Committee (ADC) members where they raised a concern of alleged corruption practices by medical personnel at the district’s hospital of demanding money from patients in need of medical attention.
Other pertinent concerns lodged during the meeting included selling of drugs and ill treatment of pregnant women at the labour ward.
“It is unfortunate and unlawful for health personnel to be engaged in these acts. People’s health rights should not be violated. The alleged corruption concerns have reached my office. I will involve other stakeholders to take proper actions to end the malpractices. These put lives of vulnerable people at risk of losing lives to treatable disease and manageable conditions. Let us (health personnel) remember our duty to diligently provide necessary support to improve health of citizens,” said Matchaya.
He said non-governmental organisations (NGOs) should popularise health rights to empower communities to report such cases to office of Ombudsman and hold service providers accountable.
One of the community members from Mbangu Village Jonas Demister asked concerned authorities to act swiftly, saying people are being denied access to health services.
“I experienced the ordeal at the Boma (Nsanje District Hospital) when my five year old son had a fracture on the arm. A health worker said there was no drugs to assist him and he demanded K3 000 if I was committed to have my son treated at the facility. I borrowed and gave him the money to acquire the service which was meant to be free,” he said.
Since the establishment of the office of Ombudsman last year at Nsanje district hospital has handled three cases.
The interface meeting was supported by Women legal resource centre(WOLREC) with financial from United Nation Trust under a project that help to improve action on ending violence against women and girls in Nsanje and Balaka.