Sunday, July 14, 2024

Construction of more health facilities key to improving access to quality health care services-Masebo

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Minister of Health Sylvia Masebo has said the construction of more health facilities such as clinics and health posts is key to improving access to quality health care services.

Ms. Masebo, the Chongwe Member of Parliament, said the New Dawn Government is seeking to decentralise health service delivery.

Speaking during the commissioning of Kalimansenga Health Post in Chongwe, Ms. Masebo said the government has promised people universal health care.

Kalimansenga Health Post in Chongwe has been constructed and equipped by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

“I sincerely thank the church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints who have constructed this health post together with its medical equipment and staff houses. We are so grateful! May I further thank the district health office and local leadership particularly the area councilor and traditional leaders for initiating this project. This gesture shown by our partners will go a long way in improving access to quality health care services to the people in this area and beyond. This health facility we are receiving today comes at a time when we are trying to decentralise health service delivery and Chongwe is one of the initial districts for decentralisation. This is one of the key deliverables for this government and our ministry of health. We have promised our people universal health care and there is no universal health care without primary health care; further there is no primary health care without functioning health structures at community level. This health post we are receiving today therefore is intended to provide the universal health care to approximately eight thousand (8,000) of our people in this area. Our people here have been facing hardships to access services particularly at night. Our people end up going as far as Kasisi rural health centre and Kasenga health post which are approximately 20 km away to access health services. On their behalf I say thank you our partners,” Ms. Masebo said.

She said the Government has placed access to quality health care top on the agenda towards attainment of universal health coverage.

“This government under the able leadership of Mr. Hakainde Hichilema, president of the republic of Zambia, has placed access to quality health care top on the agenda towards attainment of universal health coverage. It is through such partnerships with key stakeholders that our ministry will strengthen resilience in the health service delivery system through construction and improvement of health infrastructure. This is not just in Chongwe district, but indeed across the country. I therefore, urge other stakeholders to emulate this faith-based church organization which has gone an extra mile to support government develop infrastructure not only in the health sector, but also other sectors including education and agriculture. Government and our ministry assure you that we are committed in ensuring that health service provision is strengthened. We continue making significant steps in developing an efficient and robust drug and medical supply chain management system. We continue making significant steps in developing a sustained and skilled health work force with strengthened diagnostic capacity. We continue making significant steps in developing an improved transport and referral system in order to respond to the challenges people are facing in accessing health services,” Ms. Masebo said.

She said locally driven projects uplifts and enhances the lives of the local people.

“Indeed, it is projects like these that alleviate the suffering of our most needy populations in our various communities. Government re-affirms its commitment to recruit three thousand (3,000) health care workers for the year 2023. As you may be aware, government recently recruited more than 12,000 health care workers across the country. I am glad to mention that Kalimansenga health post is a facility that has benefited from this recruitment exercise making this commissioning today possible.Implementing the decentralization policy through exponential increase of the constituent development fund (CDF) from 1.5 million Kwacha to 28.6 million Kwacha is already yielding fruits across the country. This fiscal decentralization has given power to local people to decide on their development needs. Time and time again. Through this policy, the people of Chongwe in particular, have prioritized various developmental projects. This includes construction of maternity annexes in Mwalumina, Kapete and Kapwayambale Wards,” Ms. Masebo said.

“Construction of new health posts in Njolwe, Chinkuli and Madido wards. Construction of police posts in Lwiimba and Madido wards. Construction of 1×3 class room block in Katoba ward. Indeed it is through these locally driven projects that the lives of the local people will greatly be uplifted and enhanced. i would like to take this opportunity to thank Chongwe municipal council for taking up the challenge to spearhead decentralization policy agenda and i hope you will become a model example across the country. Indeed together, we can develop our country faster through decentralization. Allow me to state that investments in infrastructure development and its medical equipment do not come cheaply and therefore maintenance of these investments must be guaranteed. In this regard, I would like to appeal to the community of Twikatane to safeguard this huge investment. Remember, the construction of this facility did take quite some time to be completed. Therefore, it is only proper that you guard it jealously for the benefit of every member of the community. It is now my singular honor and privilege to officially commission the Kalimansenga health post,” she concluded.

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