Minister of Health Peter Kumpalume has criticised contractors who come up with substandard infrastructures, describing them as lacking patriotism.
Speaking in Lilongwe last week during the dissemination of Cycle 13 Results-Based Financing for Maternal and Newborn Health (RBF4MNH) results, Kumpalume said the health sector cannot afford to have substandard infrastructure.
“There is no better way of putting it. In some of the facilities, the structures are substandard despite donors putting in a lot of money and yet we are dealing with human lives here,” he said.
However, RBF4MNH director Matthew Nviiri said the design of the programme is such that the infrastructure and medical equipment procurement component is entirely handled and managed by the ministry.
“The programme’s main focus is provision of quality of care to pregnant women while infrastructure contracts are between the ministry and contractors and all tendering and monitoring is done by the Ministry of Health,” he said.
Nviiri said as a programme, they would like the ministry to come out and take responsibility of supervising infrastructure and holding the contractors accountable.
Over K1.4billion has been spent towards infrastructure development in participating hospitals in Dedza, Balaka, Ntcheu and Mchinji.
RBF4MNH is a pilot programme aimed at increasing the number of facility-based births and enhance the quality of care provided to women during labour and delivery.
The programme consisted of a performance-based financing (PBF) component, which started in April 2013 in 18 emergency obstetric care facilities and was extended in October 2014 to 28 facilities. n