Monday, June 17, 2024

Government spends US $1 million annually to evacuate patients abroad -Dr Kasonde


MINISTER of Health Dr. Joseph Kasonde gives his speech during the Zambia and Zimbabwe (ZamZim) joint World malaria day commemoration at Mukuni Park in Livingstone
MINISTER of Health Dr. Joseph Kasonde

HEALTH Minister Joseph Kasonde has disclosed that the Government spends about US $1 million annually to evacuate patients abroad for specialized treatment.

Dr Kasonde said in view of the colossal sums of money involved, he has been in support of the abolishment of sending patients outside the country to receive specialized treatment but that could only be possible if Zambia was able to treat certain medical conditions.

Dr Kasonde said this when he officiated at the planning launch for the 2015 to 2017 Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) and the 2015 Budget preparation in Lusaka yesterday.

“As you know, we are talking of something like a million US Dollars a year on sending patients abroad and we are obliged to do that because we know that in some cases we are unable to treat certain conditions, particularly child heart surgery and so we must ask other people to do it for us.

“But at the same time we must challenge ourselves, why do we have to be doing that? Can we not bring this back into our own country? What are the ways by which we could do that? And if those ways can be found, what’s the cost? What’s the framework to allow us to achieve that?” he asked.

Dr Kasonde said medical training institutions were important in human resource administration and thus the funding allocated to those institutions needed to be revisited.

He said if the country expected to have good quality medical practitioners such as nurses, doctors and laboratory scientists, among others, there was need to sacrifice resources towards that goal.

He said the formula of allocating resources needed to be reviewed so that it could be responsive to the needs of the country.

Dr Kasonde observed that there had been a significant increase in the number of skilled health workers saying it was unacceptable and did not make arithmetical sense for the country to continue with the same number of medical staff when Zambia’s population was at four million.


  1. Please can you tell us who these patients are? I wouldn’t be far from the truth if I put it to you that this evacuation is for people with connections to those in government..

    • Sad development- and for Sata to be evacuated to Israel from Lusaka to South Africa, and then South Africa to Israel in air ambulance- I am sure is even more than 1 million to himself alone.

    • These Zambian doctors or is it the PF ministers, they can’t even make up sensible numbers. $1 million is nothing, you can’t even sell a football player to Israel on that cost.
      I think these PF doctors have been Under-dosing Sata, that’s why the man has deteriorated so fast, ati no our budget is $1million. Maybe he wanted to imagine the figure $1billion, which is insufficient too.

  2. US$1Million over 13million people of zambia is too little, we need to increase the budget, how can all zambians be in tittled to close to 1dollar evacuation fee , this is BIG JOKE INDEED

  3. mafiyobe kasonde,which patients say pf ministers and sata not any ordinary zambian tombanoko,you think we are fools,ulimafi namafi yawamapo because nembwa kunti yalya,you are old and i have no respect for a dishonest person get my words musula people are dying with manageable diseases when you have neglected them.

  4. These are ministers and their bemba families otherwise give us the list if names. What nonsense this government is about.

  5. The correct headline should have been:
    Government spends US $1 million annually to evacuate GOVT OFFICIALS abroad .
    Dr Kasonde Please next time if you don’t have a statistical breakdown don’t yap.

  6. See how much money these fortune seekers cost us? Why can’t we that same money to improve on our current health infrustrature and train our medical personnel….! this is not rocket science…? Then that is when our youths are busy matchetting each other and end up in their respective comboni clinic…kanyama…chawama…..mandevu…..john lang…..woke up people. Why should we allow our government to spend all that money on a few government officials…we need to say no to such nonsense! Remember we are mightier by the numbers…power of many..if we all had to speak up…our fortune seekers would listen.

  7. Zambia is one of the most unequal societies in the world; government officials ( cabinet, heads of departments, retired politicians etc) and their families get flown out for treatment abroad and the rest of us die in bug infested hospitals. Probably health insurance will help attract investment in the health sector.

  8. and yet we see pipo on muvi tv everyday asking well wishers to help evacuate them for specialised treatment abroad

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