Guardians at Salima, Dedza District Hospitals Sound an SOS over Poor Sanitation
Guardians at Salima district hospital have warned there is Cholera outbreak scare at the facility as they have no working toilets finding relief in the nearby bush and maize gardens.
They have also expressed worry over delays to renovate the guardian shelter that had its roof blown off in December last year.
A visit to the district referral facility observed that the surrounding is unkempt with grass all over around where guardians put up and no usable toilet could be seen.
“Besides the damaged guardian shelter due to heavy winds there are no toilets here that we get relief from the nearby bush and maize fields, this is bad, but we have no choice.” Said one of the women at the guardian shelter.
Another woman there added, “We fear there might be a cholera outbreak here and other diseases like malaria as due to the damaged guardian Shelter some also sleep outside under a tree some in corridors as the tents which were mounted cannot accommodate all.” She said.
The guardians have since called on the council to expedite the renovation of the shelter and construct toilets.
However Salima district council spokesperson Grace Kapatuka says they are doing everything possible to renovate the shelter.
Kapatuka says the council needs at least ten million kwacha for the renovation which they currently do not have.
She has however downplayed the issue of lack of toilets saying there are a few of them and that they have constructed additional restrooms to be operational soon.
Meanwhile, the state of sanitation in parts of the surroundings of Dedza District Hospital also needs urgent attention.
Some of the guardians for patients at the facility have expressed concern over the situation and lack of functioning toilets at the district guardian shelter.
The guardians told Zodiak they are struggling to find toilets to relieve themselves and they are also at risk of contracting diseases.
Dedza Council Chairperson, Peter Gumbo, said lack of resources is compromising efforts to address the challenges at the facility and elsewhere in the district.