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Shortage of equipment hits Mangochi hospital

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Mangochi District Hospital is failing to provide some services to patients due to unavailability of some critical hospital equipment.

The hospital has since appealed to authorities to provide diesel-propelled generator to light up the facility in the event of the frequent power outages which the country is currently facing.

One of the doctors at the hospital, Innocent Lanjesi revealed this in an interview when Malawi Communications Regulatory Authority (Macra) donated assorted items to some patients at Mangochi District Hospital on Monday.

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Apart from the generator, Lanjesi said the hospital is also in dire need of suction machines, monitors which are used to monitor patients that have been placed life supporting machines and those patients requiring X-ray, dental chairs and other equipment.

“As a hospital we are facing a number of challenges mainly to do with lack of equipment which are central to services delivery. At the moment, we do not have a refrigerator which is used to keep cancer drugs for patients who are on chemotherapy,” he said.

Lanjesi said almost all drugs at a hospital are stored in some controlled temperatures, hence it becomes a challenge when there is no electricity.

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“We really need the main genset which can cover the entire hospital. Patients who are on life supporting machine require electricity hence it is dangerous to operate without power,” he said.

Mangochi District Hospital which has a bed capacity of around 350, carters for a population of about 1.2 million people.

In some bad days, the hospital has an average of 10 people on life supporting machines, which require electricity for 24 hours a day.

In addition, patients on life supporting machines, premature babies who are under incubation also require constant supply of electricity for survival.

On a daily basis, an average of 55 Children are born at the facility’s maternity wing, of which some of them are sent for incubation.

In his remarks, Macra Director of Finance Ben Chitsonga said his organisation decided to donate to patients during the festive season as one way of showing love which is associated with the birth of Jesus Christ.

He revealed that Macra has this year spent about K15 million to support patients in the four hospitals of Mangochi, Nkhotakota, Queen Elizabeth Central and Rumphi.

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