Male, Female Patients Share Hospital Ward in CK

Chithumba Health Center Chithumba Health Center - pic by Christopher Sande

Communities surrounding Chithumba area under Chief Chapananga in Chikwawa have asked authorities to extend Chithumba Health Center which currently has no maternity wing.

A visit to Chithumba, a hard to reach area some 100 kilometers away from Chikwawa boma, revealed that communities are living miserable life particularly when it comes to accessing health care services and sanitation services.

Some villagers were seen drinking water from untreated water sources and women who have just delivered babies at the old Chithumba Health Centre sharing a ward with men because the facility does not have a maternity ward.

Group Village Headman Chithumba and in charge of the facility Nico Elesoni told Zodiak Online that sometimes the women are forced to share a ward with critically sick men waiting to be referred to the district hospital a situation which is not ideal as their right to privacy as patients is not respected.

"The situation is really bad. We need urgent support," said Group Village Headman Chithumba.

They have since asked government and non-governmental organizations including Malawi Red Cross Society to aid the villagers by constructing a special ward in order to protect the dignity of women.

Chithumba Health Centre serves a population of about 10, 000 people.

Meanwhile, people in the same area of Chapananga are asking authorities to re-open Chang'ambika Health Center which was shut down some eight years ago after a disagreement occurred between communities and the staff members

Recently, Health Minister Khumbidze Kandodo Chiponda assured the people in Chikwawa that government is intending to construct additional health facilities in rural areas in order to promote delivery of quality health services.

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