Community leaders around Mpata and Kasoba health centres in Paramount Chief Kyungu’s area in Karonga have asked the district council to fill vacancies in the facilities to enhance service delivery.
Group village head Kalambo made the call on Tuesday during a Centre for Human Rights and Rehabilitation (CHRR) meeting that brought together traditional leaders, health centre management committees and accountability clubs.
The meeting looked at challenges hampering the attainment of universal health coverage in the two facilities.
He said: “The two health facilities are understaffed and do not have maternity wings and enough space for out-patients and antiretroviral therapy.”
Kasoba Health Centre Management Committee chairperson Mathews Mwamsamale lamented continued shortage of drugs and medical supplies, saying it is negatively impacting the poor.
In an interview, Karonga director of health and social services David Sibale said understaffing is a general problem due to retirement, resignation and pursuit of further education.
“We are doing all we can to bring back the maternity wing. We have written several partners to support the initiative. However, locally the council could explore ways of solving the problem through District and Constituency Development funds,” he said.
Sibale further said availability of drugs in health facilities largely depends on the availability of the same at Central Medical Stores Trust.
CHRR project coordinator Modester Ramundi commended community leaders for being proactive in providing checks and balances to the healthcare system to ensure that duty-bearers play their rightful roles.