Lazarus Chakwera pledges to breathe life into health sector
President Lazarus Chakwera has said his administration is committed to addressing the challenges rocking the health sector in Malawi.
Chakwera made the pledge in Mangochi Friday when he opened the 9th Society of Medical Doctors (SMD) Annual Medical Conference.
He highlighted issues of inadequate personnel, shortage of equipment, dilapidated structures and poor working conditions for doctors as areas that need to be addressed.
“The health sector is very critical in our pursuit to foster social and economic development of the country. But we are aware that there is need to make the health sector more health for everyone including health workers.
“As such, the government will do everything possible to ensure that these challenges are ironed out,” he said.
He said government plans to identify partners who can help to facelift all the public health facilities across the county to ensure that doctors are working in an environment that can motivate them to go an extra mile in saving lives of Malawians.
Chakwera also revealed that government is in the process of acquiring necessary high-tech equipment for public hospitals as a way of reducing the number of patients who are referred abroad for treatment.
The President commended the doctors for working diligently to mitigate the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic among Malawians.
He said over 50,000 people, which is 80 percent of those who were infected by Covid-19, recovered from the virus.
“This means that our doctors managed to save about 50,000 lives which could have been lost in some 50,000 households. The doctors managed to prevent a possibility that children in the 50,000 households could have been orphaned by the pandemic,” he said.
He further advised the SMD to be proactive in suggesting means with which the government can address issues affecting the health sector as a whole.
SMD president, Victor Mithi, appealed to government to find means of urgently addressing housing challenges which medical personnel are facing.
“Medical doctors are being evicted from their houses because government is not paying for them. Those who are staying in rented houses are failing to pay rent because their salaries are low. There is need for government to review salaries and other working conditions for medical personnel in the country,” he said.