Deputy Minister of Health Chrissy Kalamula Kanyasho has donated 2 000 face masks to Ekwendeni Mission Hospital and Kaweche Health Centre in Mzimba District to help in the fight against Covid-19.
She made the donation on Friday during her tour of the two health facilities to assess how they are handling the pandemic.
Said Kanyasho: “I wanted to hear the challenges that the hospitals are facing. So far, they have lots of needs, including personal protective equipment [PPE] and oxygen cylinders.”
The deputy minister said she would take the issues to the ministry’s technocrats to see how they can assist the hospital.
Kanyasho, who is Nkhata Bay North legislator, expressed concern with the poor health-seeking behaviour among communities following reports that the two facilities are registering low attendance because people were afraid of contracting the virus.
She said: “We have engaged the ministries of Civic Education and Information to help us with sending out information to Malawians to dispel the myths and misinformation about Covid-19.”
In his remarks, Mzimba District director of health and social services Ted Bandawe asked the deputy minister to consider increasing funding for health care to the district.
“We are inadequately funded, which affects some of our services. I have close to 60 facilities and a population of about one million. We need to be considered for more funding and support to provide health services smoothly in the district,” he said.
According to Bandawe, they receive K28 million for Mzimba South and K15 million for Mzimba North monthly, which is 50 percent of what the district needs to cover all areas with health services.
He also said the Mzimba District Council received K50 million on February 2 this year for Covid-19 response which had not been spent at the time of the deputy minister’s visit.
Kanyasho then advised Bandawe to work with all hospitals in the district to provide for their needs.