GOVERNMENT has allocated over K100 million for the upgrading of Lusaka’s Matero and Chilenje clinics into district hospitals.
Minister of Health Joseph Kasonde says K92,760,000 is for actual construction works while K7,968,000 has been set aside for the procurement of medical equipment for the two hospitals.
Dr Kasonde said at a media briefing in Lusaka yesterday that design works have been concluded and contractors are expected to move on site in June this year and scheduled to conclude works in 15 months.
The minister said the upgrading of the two clinics into hospitals is aimed at decongesting the University Teaching Hospital (UTH) and Levy Mwanawasa General Hospital.
“Therefore by August next year, Chilenje and Matero district hospitals are expected to be fully equipped and functional.
“In addition, government has already constructed five theatres in clinics earmarked for upgrading, namely Chilenje, Matero, Kanyama, Chipata and Chelston,” he said.
Dr Kasonde also said Government plans to construct a modern second-level hospital to provide health services to residents of Lusaka west.
Meanwhile, the ministry of Health has demarcated Lusaka district into four zones.
Dr Kasonde said the zoning has been conducted to improve the referral system as each zone will have a first-level hospital with several health centres surrounding it.
He said Lusaka is the most populated city in the country with a population of two million and this has posed a challenge to the delivery of quality healthcare services.
“Health centres from each zone will refer patients to the first-level hospital in a particular zone and this will lead into decongesting UTH and Levy Mwanawasa General Hospital. It will also bring healthcare services close to the people,” Dr Kasonde said.
And Government has procured medical equipment worth over K100 million.
The equipment comprises cardiac catherisation laboratory, laundry and kitchen, ophthalmology, imaging, physiotherapy and dental, among others.
Dr Kasonde said the equipment will be disbursed to district, second- and third-level hospitals countrywide.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Health contained the outbreak of cholera over the last rainy season in Lusaka as no case was recorded.
Dr Kasonde said Mpulungu district recorded 14 cases while Chienge had two.
He said Government spent over K300,000 on controlling various diseases.