Sat, 15 Oct 2016 10:42:22 +0000
ZAMBIA Medical Association says the recently commissioned Matero and Chilenje district hospitals are still operating as clinics due to the absence of the necessary professional staff to support its intended capacity. ZMA president Aaron Mujajati said there was need for the Government through the Ministry of Health to begin assigning doctors and nurses in various fields of expertise to increase demand for the facilities to be able to provide the necessary services at that level.
He said in effect, with such expertise at the two health facilities in Lusaka, it would help to decongest the University Teaching Hospital (UTH) which has over the years resorted to the use of floor beds as number of patients exceeded the bed capacity at the country’s largest hospital. “These facilities are still operating as a clinic when they are district hospitals. “There is need to decongest UTH and reduce the high nurse-patient ratio which will also improve healthcare services,” Dr Mujajati said.
He was speaking during a joint media breakfast held in commemoration of the Handwashing Day in conjunction with WaterAid as a contributing factor in the prevalence of water borne and highly communicable diseases in the country. The ZMA boss said Government must begin to increase capacity for the new district hospitals across the country through an enhanced staff recruitment programme that meets patient demand. And Dr Mujajati has attributed the high illiteracy levels in the country as major contributors to the re-occurrence of communicable disease such as typhoid and other diarrhoea infections which have pestered Zambia over the years.
He said improved sanitation could only be achieved with adequate public education on the importance and benefits of such activities as handwashing and decent sanitation. Dr Mujajati said in the medical profession, hand washing was an important part of procedure and must be adhered to as an art, systematically done to ensure effective results failure to which patients stand at a high risk of cross infections. The country has been commemorating handwashing as a contributing factor to improved healthcare and general sanitation among the public.