Drug shortage hits Malawi public hospitals–Report

Malawi’s government hospitals are experiencing critical shortages of medicines putting the health of patients at risk forcing some hospitals to turn patients away.

A ward at KCH

A ward at KCH

Health Rights Education Programme (HREP) executive director Maziko Matemba, has since said the lack of drugs posed a danger to the citizenry.

According to published report, some of the worst affected district hospitals are asking for medical supplies from rural health centres and clinics and that the capacity of the Central Medical Stores Trust (CMST) in ensuring the availability and regular supply of drugs, has been put into question.

According to Daily Times report, most of the drugs that are unavailable in several district hospitals are pain killers, antibiotics, anti-malaria drugs and contraceptive commodities.

“For metronidazole injectable, it’s over two months out of stock. This is an essential drug used more often on obstetric postoperative cases. Amoxicillin is out of stock at the moment whilst the supply of benzyl penicillin is always erratic and we usually don’t get the quantities which we require,” Kasungu District Health Officer (DHO), Jerome Nkhambule told the newspaper.

Nkhambule added that dental the district has stopped offering teeth extraction services as lignocaine has not been available since November

Balaka DHO Bertha Maseko said the drug shortage challenge has been dogging the hospital over the past two months.

“We are running out of stock of many types of drugs, including pain killers, contraceptives and antibiotics like benzyl penicillin as well as drugs for mentally disturbed patients,” Maseko explained.

She said the district has been requesting for all types of drugs but they are not been provided in time.

Parliament allocated the Ministry of Health being allocated K70 billion of which K17 billion was meant for drug procurement.

Drug shortages in Malawi’s public hospitals are nothing new. But, health authorities say the situation has reached a critical tipping point. The majority of patients cannot get treatment at public hospitals and doctors are rationing the few medications they do have.

Health Rights Education Programme (HREP) executive director Maziko Matemba bemoaned the drug shortage situation, saying it is taking place after the Ministry of Health in conjunction with some partners a few years ago conducted studies on national drug quantification and leakage.

“The study recommended that the government needs to adopt in reducing incidences of medicines stock out that the country regular faces which included scaling up medicines/drug financing,” he is quoted by Daily Times.

Matemba said the Ministry of Health should revisit the previous arrangement of involving local drug suppliers as gap fillers in the medicines supply chain in an effort to address the shortages.

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21 thoughts on “Drug shortage hits Malawi public hospitals–Report”

  1. donnier kondowe says:

    prophe wanangwa phiri of bethsaida prepare way curch n ministry in lilongwe on nov 4 last year prophesied tht they will be no drugs in public hospitals ,and it has come to pass,he also prophesied about the floods and death of spiritual leaders,for more info on this man of God,just search for prophet wanangwa phiri .mulungu atithandize amalawi ndithu!

  2. A MPINGO says:



  3. Lazalo says:

    Amayi anachita bwino kuluza, apa akanatukanidwa koopsya. Awa satukwanodwa poti otukanawo ndieniake tsopano. Amalawi phunzirani

  4. thamangani anduna.a mp aderalo akaone chimene chikuchitika pa kamuzu c hosp nchiyani? akuba medicines timaona doctors ntchito ikulephera simuyendera medicines stores amalawi kondani amalawi anzanu lekani kuba!!

  5. Nankungwi says:

    Zing Phee if there is no money to buy the drugs you can have as good nduna as you like you will still have problem! Its small thinking like that that brings Malawi down. Just because someone is a nduna thye dont just click their fingers and solve your problems for you!

    kodi umbuli woterewu ndiye udzatha liti?

  6. Nkasai says:

    Mankwala akugulisidwa kwa ma private clinic .check u will find them

  7. Balamanthu says:

    Munaika mbava yayikulu ku Central Medical stores.Wherever Bwana Kaupa has been, amabako-ask ESCOM, Natural Resources College and even ku school kumene.Worse still, there is an MP, not of Malawi origin who is very good at supplying nothing to Central Medical Stores, and uses the money to share with politicians.He has consistently done this since 1994.Ma campaign achipaniwa anthu amakatenga ndalama kwa iyeyo and he is a mafia too in the center of Malawi.

    Achonchowa muyenera kuwamanga for life akagwidwa.Nanga ambuyanga azifa pa Thondwepa chifukwa cha mbava zaku CMS.?

  8. Mike siliya says:

    Comment; thats bad, i mean bad!!

  9. Khondiwa says:

    Isn’t this the case since Kamuzu lost to Bakili?
    . Lack of medication in hospitals
    . Sugar (on and off)
    . Quality education
    . High cost of living

    Other things are definitely better than Kamuzu’s time but, what good are they if we have no security or medicine to mention a few?

  10. komayah says:

    malawi nde yalowa bwembatu……. chilichonse chivuta…..koma wosaukaka okhaokha…wolemera alipheee…….who is going fight for them that one day we shall stand and call him ahero

  11. zanga phee says:

    Kodi unduna wa Zaumoyo ulipo kapena unatha, ndafunsa chomwechi chifukwa sindikutha kumvetsa kuti chipatala chidzikhala opanda mankhwala pamene unduna wake ulipo.
    kodi mmayesa nduna ya Zaumoyo ili ngulu lija Lidathamanga kupita ku Police ya kulumbadzi kukalemba mayina pakhoma la cell imene anagona , kodi ma million anawononga sakanatha kugulira mankhwala ndikupulumutsa miyoyo ya anthu mzipatalamu,
    kodi tsopano pamenepa ndalama ija mumati ya by pass k1500, igwira bwanji ntchito mankhwala kulibe.
    tikufuna reshaffle mma unduna omwe sakupanga perform.
    BLOOD PRESSURE isakweretu kkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk.

  12. Magaseni says:

    Tiyeni tione njira zothetsera mavutowa osati kungoona mavutowo ndikuwathawanso ai. Matenda omwe atchulidwa apawa kuti mankhwala ake palibe mzipatala zina, ndiochizika ndi mankhwala achilengedwe(herbal/tropical medicine) no need kumapitanso kuchipatala ndi malaria,mutu, m’mimba,chifuwa ,chifine ndi zina, tiyeni tithandizaneni kuti anthu tisamadwale chisawawa choncho mzipatala muzachepa ma patient ndipo mankhwala azakhalamo ambiri.Funsani a ANAMED kapena ineyo. Inu a Malawi Nyasa Times tazilembaniko zimenezi nthawi zina.Inu a boma mumazidziwa zimenezi ndichifukwa chiani simulimbikitsa zimenezi?.Bwana Maziko Matemba, chitaniponi kanthu pa nkhaniyi.

  13. let us change our mode of doing business let us adopt other modes busines as usuall will not just let us down but take us doredrums. it is high that every malawian should take aresponsibility in his/her health including relations,spouses and children.if we will contintinue this honeymoon and put all the burden on goverment then our cry for drugs will be aday planned work.the population is too wide for spoon feeding let us learn to invest in our own lives,let us help goverment in runing the hospitals by contributing something on the medical services

  14. billy wonjoya says:

    ma nurse mukunyanya kugulisa makhwala azipatala blantyre muli mavendor ambiri wogulitsa makhwala mozembesa

  15. choyamba says:

    How can CMST perform with the likes of Dr Moses Chisale and Feston Kaupa very corrupt people ntchito kulandila ndalama Kwa non performing suppliers mufadi a amalawi.

  16. Otee says:

    This has to be looked into

  17. Otee says:

    most private clinics are stocking different staffs, {drugs} where do they get the medicine.

  18. Chakuchaku says:

    U’re Going 2 Kill Many Of U.

  19. Careful Banda says:

    if not NAC gate then back gate sales ..

  20. Chimwemwe says:

    The effects of NAC gate……

  21. ben says:

    The Pharmacy board in Malawi is charging ridicously high for medicine import fees, they need to lower the fees, wakuba kuchita renovate malo koma anthu ku malira oponda mankhwala

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