Government devises ways of improving water, air medical services
Lusaka, April 15, ZANIS — Government has come up with a mobile directorate unit that will effectively manage all forms of marine and air transport in the Ministry of Health.
And Government has devised an infrastructure development programme aimed at having all its public health facilities such as hospitals, clinics and rural health centres rehabilitated.
Deputy Minister of Health Christopher Mulenga said the mobile directorate unit in his ministry will be in charge of all marine boats and the medical air transport of the Zambia Flying Doctors Services.
Mr. Mulenga said the unit will receive all the necessary budgetary support from government in the 2014 national budget.
The minister said this in Nchelenge district recently during his tour of Luapula province where he was inspecting infrastructure and the drug situation at various public health institutions in the region.
Previously, respective District Health Management Teams, especially those in outlying waterborne and swampy areas were the ones charged with the responsibility of managing the marine transport vehicles such as speed boats and canoes.
Mr. Mulenga revealed that the Patriotic Front (PF) government has upgraded Saint Paul’s mission hospital in Nchelenge to a second level referral hospital.
He said the move was part of the government’s ongoing programme of elevating most hospitals to referral health institutions in an effort to decongest them.
And on the nationwide concerns of drug shortages in most public hospitals and clinics, Mr. Mulenga said government has increased the budget allocation for drug procurement from last year’s KR 279 million to KR 290 million.
The minister said there were enough drugs in the country noting that the shortage was artificial because it was mainly caused by pilferage of drugs.
Meanwhile, Saint Paul’s mission hospital Administrative Officer Regina Mulenga praised government for upgrading the health institution to a referral hospital.
Sister Mulenga said most complicated cases of illnesses in the district and surrounding areas would now be tackled at her hospital.