Health Minister Muluzi visits Diamphwi: Communities to benefit from new ‘Storage in a box’ unit

Communities around Diamphwi health centre are expected to benefit from a newly installed prefabricated pharmacy ‘Storage In a Box Unit’ (SIaB) which will improve storage capacity for holding medicines and medical supplies.

Muluzi (centre) on his visit . Photo by Govati Nyirenda, Mana

During the inspection and appreciation of the installed SIaB, Minister of Health, Atupele Muluzi said the Malawi government had with support from the United States (US) government carried out a rapid assessment on storage space and visual inspection in 640 public, CHAM and private health facilities throughout the country.

He explained that the findings of the assessment indicated that 77 percent of the health facilities have less than half of the storage space required to meet current demands in the rural areas.

“Based on the results of the assessment, government with support from USAID and DFID implemented the first phase of the installation of prefabricated facilities that would address the issue of storage space,” said Muluzi.

He said in view of the continued need for more storage space to cater for commodities and drugs including those for Tuberculosis, HIV and Malaria, the Global Fund joined the other donors in supporting the country in the installation of 95 prefabricated units throughout the country.

“To ensure availability of adequate and appropriate space, the Ministry of Health made provision in the current TB/HIV grant from the Global Fund for the continued procurement and installation of these units which are in two categories depending on the required space capacity of 70 square meter unit and 140 square meter unit,” he said.

He said Diamphwi, Matapira, Nsaru, Mbabzi and Lumbadzi health centres are some of the health facilities with SIaBs installed within Lilongwe.

Council Chair for Lilongwe district, John Kawinga asked the Minister to assist them with houses for medical personnel and staff as the hospital is understaffed.

Diamphwi health centre which was established in 1988 currently serves over 21, 000 people, a number which, according to the minister, is more than what the centre would normally accommodate in service.

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