Malawi doctors call for volunteers to support frontline health care staff

The Society of Medical Doctors (SMD) has called for volunteer health workers to  support the frontline health care staff  during this unprecedented coronavirus pandemic.

Doctors president Mithi: Call for volunteer scheme

The doctors made the call in a statement  barely a day after President Lazarus Chakwera admitted that the country’s health system had been “overwhelmed” by the surge.

“The situation is quite desperate,” he said, laying out plans to recruit about 1380 personnel and open field hospitals in an effort to manage  the virus pandemic.

Chakwera said in the televised speech monitored on taxpayer-funded Malawi Broadcasting Corporation  on Sunday that the health system is no fit-for-purpose partly blamed on decades of neglect and plunder.

The Society of Medical Doctors  president Victor Mithi said they need volunteers, particularly clinicians, nurses and laboratory personnel that are either not employed or have free time, to work at the equivalent  grade allowances in Covi-19 centres in central hospital isolation wards and new field hospitals to be set up  by government.

“Those willing to help should be fully registered with their regulatory bodies, they should be without a comer bity that could increase their risk of developing severe Covid -19 and if they are employed, they should have a written permission letter for this initiative from their employers,” reads a statement for the doctors.

Mithi said the virus pandemic has exposed Malawi’s health system and the need to invest in it.

President Chakwera on Sunday said government will increase admission space from the current 400 national treatment units to 1500 over the next month, including the setting up of a 300-bed capacity field hospital at Blantyre Youth Centre, another 300-bed capacity field hospital at Bingu National Stadium, a 200-bed capacity emergency treatment unit in Mzuzu, and a 100-bed capacity field hospital at the Zomba State House.

Chakwera said priority for the government is immediate procurements of personal protective equipment (PPE) for all  frontline health workers, 1000 cylinders of oxygen along with accessories such as flow meters and patient monitors, which “must be in the country by the end of the week, even by chartered plane if need be”.

He said maintenance of oxygen plants in Nkhata Bay and at Kamuzu Central Hospital is already underway.

The President also ordered the setting up of 1000 beds, including 50 to 100 specialised intensive care unit beds, the purchase of non-invasive ventilators to assist those having difficulty breathing on their own and 50 000 test kits to meet the projected demand for the next four months.

In the wake of  two Malawian cabinet officials dying of coronavirus last week, President Chakwera  declared a State of National Disaster to combat the spread of the virus as cases have increased since the new year.

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Anzelu ndi Anzelu
Anzelu ndi Anzelu
3 months ago

The courts of Malawi should prioritize recovering all the money stolen and channel it to the health sector. We lost billions, from Bakili, to Bingu, Joyce, Peter and their cronies. Recover all the money and we will achieve vision 20 63 in 5 years time

Mangochi Kabwafu
Mangochi Kabwafu
3 months ago

Wake up call.

Chisale
Chisale
3 months ago

Politians have not been listening to people, no priorities. They have never invested in the health sector, instead they would rather build stadiums for private football teams. They would rather be paying huge loans for a stadium which does not generate any income.
In all this because they know they will fly to India or South Africa for all sorts of treatment. I am sorry with Covid, we are all gonna share the same medical facilities, that is the reality.

Cairo
Cairo
3 months ago
Reply to  Chisale

Thats not an issue Chisale, its about allocation of funds. The funds are there, for instance, hiring of useless Presidential advisors, its just a waste of public funds, a minister going to India and everything paid for by public funds, a bloated cabinet, waste of financial resources, the list goes on. The Tonse Alliance govt now has pressed the panic button, trouble is still flowing in.

nafundo zalo
nafundo zalo
3 months ago
Reply to  Cairo

we had monies before and we could be continuing using it. Yep much more spent on lodges , expensive cars satisfying themselves. can we confiscate these stuff to use for emergencies may be!!
We got lots lots lots lots and lots of MONEY IN MW.
Lets work together to help end Covid

guest
guest
3 months ago
Reply to  Cairo

ndiwe khadeti vuto lake….sukukamba za Jappie ndi Botoman anagwidwa on camera akukambilana zama allowance bwanji?? nde mpaka 2025 tu ukubangulabe chotere

Manyalira Mhone
3 months ago
Reply to  guest

Mnyero wako iwe. Kodi munthu akalemba zotsutsa ndiye kuti ndi cadet? Gonthi iwe. Mxiiii

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