- Medical camp to save Malawi government K300 million
The East, Central and Southern African Health Community (ECSA-HC) medical/surgical camp which starts Monday at Thyolo hospital has created a twist to the story of fistula disease as a female-only ailment with a male case scheduled for surgery.
A group of some 32 medics from the ECSA-HC is in the country to help poor Malawians who would otherwise not access specialist treatment.
The medics have confirmed one patient (name withheld), would undergo surgery to for fistula.
According to team leader Professor Christopher Samukenge of Zimbabwe, the surgical camp in Thyolo is expected to assist more than 140 patients with different conditions from urinary problems, gynecological defects, orthopedic (bone problems) and general surgeries.
Minister of Health Dr. Jean Kaliranisaid the camp is a huge saving on medical bills the government would have otherwise incurred had it referred the 149 patients to mainly South Africa where Malawi sends most of its patients in need of specialized medical care.
“This event will therefore bring together local and foreign specialists doctors from East and central Africa comprising physicians, cardiovascular and orthopedic surgeons, anesthetists, obstetricians, gynecologists, urologists, physiotherapists and other medical care personnel. These specialist doctors will offer specialized surgical and medical care to patients,” she said.
Malawi, with a population of about 15 million people, has a doctor patient ratio of about 1:10 000 and a much lesser population of specialised surgeons. The World Health Organisation (WHO) recommends the ratio of one doctor to 1 000 patients.
Samukange said the medical camp which started in 2012 is an initiative o African doctors to help fellow Africans in need of specialised treatment.
“It also showcases the specialists we have in the region,” he said.
The ECSA-HC medical camp was first conducted in Lesotho in 2012 and last year, Swaziland was second to benefit.
The purpose of the camp is to promote South to South cooperation, but more importantly, this “will offer free specialized medical and surgical services to needy patients, thereby contributing to the alleviation of the existing disease burden at individual, family, community and national level.”
The camp will also provide the highest possible level of medical and surgical care to patients that would otherwise have been referred to foreign hospitals and provide continuous medical education (CME) to health care workers.
It will also teach basic surgical and clinical management skills to Malawian health care workers possessing no specialized surgical training, but who may be required to provide surgical services in their hospitals.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :