By Richard Kayenda
MZUZU-(MaraviPost)-It is no longer a secret that patients at Mzuzu Central Hospital share beds due to overcrowding of the same in the hospital wards.
Speaking after a tour by the Ministry of Health on Monday, Principal Administrator for the hospital, Frank Sinyiza, said there is a bed capacity of 350 patients but at the present the hospital accommodates about 450 patients, a situation that forces them to share beds.
“The hospital was built in 2000 against a small population at that time, but over the years our population has exponentially increased and this means that the number of patients in the hospital increase as such beds are not enough for every patient. As you saw in the maternity ward, some two or three babies were sharing a bed because they are not enough for each one of them, ” Sinyiza said.
Expressing similar sentiments, one of the administrators at Mzuzu Health Centre, Emily Gama said their facility is also faced with shortage of space and she asked government to consider expanding the same.
But responding to the appeal, Minister of Health, Jappie Mhango said the government has plans to build about 250 health centres to reduce the number of patients in the district and central hospitals.
“The government appreciates the shortage of hospitals in the country and it is our plan to construct around 250 health centres in all the districts of the country. This will help people to walk short distances whenever they seek medical attention and is in line with the stratagies of World Health Organisation which say that by 2030 everyone should have access to medical support, ” said Mhango.
The Government of Malawi built Mzuzu Central Hospital in the year 2000 with funding from the Government of Taiwan.