Malawi to set up cardiac centre in Lilongwe

Plans are underway for Malawi’s Ministry of Health to open the first ever cardiac center in the country at the Kamuzu Central Hospital (KCH) in the capital, Lilongwe.

Government says once operational, the center, which is now at conceptualization stage, will save millions of Kwacha it spends on sending patients with heart problems to foreign hospitals.

Despite the seriousness of the issue, Malawi has no facility that offers cardiac services, a development that forces patients with heart-related complications to seek medical attention abroad, mainly in South Africa.

Chimbali: Malawi to train specialists

Malawi’s late former President Bingu wa Mutharika died of cardiac arrest on April 5th, 2012 at Kamuzu Central Hospital after doctors failed to save his life because of unavailability of the facility.

And two weeks after his death, the Ministry of Health started planning to have a centre of excellence for cardiac care at KCH.

Ministry of Health spokesperson Henry Chimbali told Daily Times that the project was still at a conceptualization stage and government was busy getting feedback from various stakeholders.

The spokesperson emphasized that the centre was very vital to Malawians as it would drastically trim down expenses that government incurs when referring patients to foreign hospitals.

“When finalized, the concept will assist to mobilize resources and equipment to make the centre operational,” Chimbali said adding that it will also create an easy access to all who have emergency heart conditions.

Currently, Chimbali said the ministry was considering an offer by the Malawi University of Science and Technology (MUST) in Thyolo to create a centre of training on cardiovascular medicine.

“We are considering this offer because it will be a great opportunity to train specialists in this area,” he said.

Cardiac care services covers all sicknesses to do with the heart like low blood supply to the heart, hearts with holes and cardiac arrest.

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