Gumare Hospital Overwhelmed

| June 4, 2015

Gumare Primary Hospital is overwhelmed by the growing population of the Okavango Sub-district as evidenced by the bed occupancy rate.

The sub-district council chairperson, Councillor Mbahahauka Kambimba, said during a full council meeting recently that the 34-bed hospital also served as a referral for the entire sub-district.

The hospital started as a health centre in 1985 and was ultimately upgraded to primary hospital status but with the same structure. Cllr Kambimba said currently the sub-district had a population of 61 510 (2011), which was unable to cater for because eight beds were for the maternity ward while 26 were for the general ward.

“The occupancy rate for the maternity ward in 2013 was 104 percent and 92 per cent in 2014, while the general ward had 73 percent occupancy by January to April this year,” he said.

He said in April this year the hospital ordered 102 items but only 39 were supplied, which gives a supply of 38 percent and the relevant department is continuing to request the short supplied items from other facilities around the country.

Furthermore, the legislator stated that educating clinics and health posts to engage in proper drugs management and ordering adequate supplies on time will continue.

He said the challenges encountered were mostly to do with the short supply of required drugs and items as well as the time it took for the supplier to deliver the ordered goods.

He also briefed the full council about the shortage of managers, including a public health specialist, chief medical officer and a pharmacist to manage the sub-district.

He said all the health posts had two nurses except for Eretsha due to the shortage of accommodation, and that all other catchment areas have resident doctors except for Nokaneng.

Concerning transfers, he said the sub-district was given 20 midwives and only seven reported for duty while two had been redirected and 11 had not yet reported, adding that employees did not want to work in the Okavango area for various reasons.

He also briefed his colleagues about the shortage of vehicles, especially ambulances, noting that the situation was exacerbated by frequent breakdowns.

“These breakdowns are mainly brought about by the difficult and challenging terrain of the area as well as accidents and delays at the mechanical workshops,” he pointed out.

Meanwhile, he said he council management had resolved to have one vehicle per catchment area to ease the pressure while two boats were operating to assist the Seronga catchment area.

In their comments, councillors expressed concern about the bad condition of the hospital and urged the government to do something, including the construction of new structures or the provision of some caravans so as to accommodate patients while the government was still looking for money to construct a new hospital.

Cllrs Keobinetse Matenanga of GumareTubu South and Johnson Kazombungo of NokanengHabu said the situation needed to be attendant to urgently because it is an old project.

Cllr Kazombungo suggested that the house should visit the hospital to look at the situation and make informed resolutions or recommendations about the situation so that action could be taken.

The councillors further stated that there was no privacy at the hospital because males, females and children shared a crowded room.

GumareTubu North councillor, Mr Mpoke Karapo requested the health department to repair the washing machine for the hospital.


Source : Botswana Daily News

Category: Medical/Health Care

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