Patients at Nsanje District Hospital have now resorted to go begging for food in surrounding villages following hospital management decision to stop provision of breakfast and lunch.
Nsanje District Hospital has joined a string of public hospitals that have discontinued provision of free food to patients due to lack of money following huge budgetary cuts.
Some patients and health workers said the situation in Nsanje is pathetic as the sick without guardians go out begging for food in surrounding villages and houses from nearby health workers.
“The situation is pathetic for TB patients and those on life prolonging ARVs. Something must be done,” said a health worker at the hospital.
She said the patients are now a menace to the houses of health workers as some of them camp there seeking left over food.
The Hospital official Alexander Chifuwa confirmed the suspension of provision of breakfast and lunch due to financial problems.
“We suspended the provision of breakfast and lunch last week,” he said.
Minister of Health Peter Kumpalume said in parliament last week the government is doing all it can to provide food to patients.
Minister of Finance Goodall Gondwe said on Monday in parliament the economic situation should improve by first quarter of 2016 when the government fulfills the extended credit facility of the International Monetary Fund.
He said the government has not borrowed in November and was optimistic that the government will not borrow through treasury bills and issuance of bonds, one of the conditions set by the IMF.