Germany pledges continued support to health sector
Germany has said it is committed to supporting Malawi’s efforts in improving maternal and child healthcare in the country.
German Deputy Head of Mission [Head of Development Cooperation], Thomas Staiger, made the pledge in Ntcheu District on Wednesday after he, in the company of Health Minister Atupele Muluzi, inspected rehabilitation works at Bwanje and Kasinje health centres.
The works being carried out at both facilities include construction of a block, a waiting mothers’ hostel and extension of existing structures.
“Through this project, we want to improve the quality of care [in terms of] maternal and newborn health provided in health centres and we want to make sure that pregnant women arrive in health facilities in time and that they stay long enough after delivery,” Staiger said.
Bwanje and Kasinje health centres are among selected health centres in Ntcheu, Balaka, Dedza and Mchinji which are undergoing rehabilitation and expansion with funding from Germany and Norway through the Options Results Based Financing for Maternal and Newborn Health (RBF4MNH) Programme.
Staiger said they have provided around €50 million to the RBF4MNH Programme which, he noted, has started bearing positive results.
Staiger said he is particularly happy that traditional leaders have been actively involved in the implementation of the project.
“We are registering good results in this project. We are seeing improvement in quality [and] we have seen improvement in staff motivation. And a specific feature I like about this programme is the involvement of traditional leaders which, I think, is key to the success of the programme,” Staiger said.
On his part, Muluzi said the structures would go a long way in improving the health of mothers and new-borns.
“I would like to sincerely thank the German Government, through the Options/RBF, for this kind gesture which will contribute significantly to [efforts of making sure that] mothers and newborns [have] access to quality healthcare,” Muluzi said.
Muluzi added that the government is considering upgrading Kasinje Health Centre to a rural hospital so that communities do not travel to Ntcheu District Hospital to access secondary healthcare services.
However, Muluzi asked health workers to stop abusing resources and stealing drugs, saying the government has come up with stringent measures to curb drug pilferage.
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