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Be nice, gentle to patients, Dr Zulu tells health workers

EASTERN Province health officer Dr Gideon Zulu has urged health staff in the province to be good and nice to patients.

In an interview on Thursday at Nyanje Mission Hospital, Dr Zulu said health staff should be good, gentle, and nice to patients as by so doing, others will get healed even before receiving medication.

He expressed happiness with the quality of work done at the hospital as the staff was very much dedicated to duty.

“Our word of encouragement to our staff is let’s be mindful the way we manage our patients. We need to be good, we need to smile to our patients because once we smile, even those that are ill can get healed from the smile you give them. Actually I am glad with what I have found at Nyanje because the staff is well organised. We have seen it’s an old hospital which requires a lot of support in terms of renovations but we are happy with the quality of work our staff provides; very dedicated and they want to do their best,” Dr Zulu said.

He called on traditional leaders to sensitise their subjects to be accommodative to the staffs who would be doing indoor spraying in their communities so that malaria is eradicated by 2021.

“I want to appeal to our communities out there that our health ministry is doing a lot as we want to ensure that we eliminate malaria by 2021. So with the indoor spraying exercise, we appeal to the communities to welcome the people who will be implementing the programme and allow them enter the houses to spray so that mosquitoes die and like that we won’t have malaria. And if you don’t have malaria, you become productive in various activities like in the fields, gardens…” he said.

He bemoaned that communities at times do not appreciate government efforts in eradicating malaria because they misuse the items given by government such as treated nets, which they use for fishing, gardening and other wrong purposes.

“We face challenges from the communities like when we issue out the mosquito nets, some people will use them for other purposes other than the intended purpose such as chicken homes, gardens and fishing, all these are wrong purposes. Let’s prevent ourselves from getting sick, these items are given to us at huge cost in order to prevent sickness,” Dr Zulu said.

He also called on traditional leaders to ensure early marriages were not allowed.

He called on parents and traditional leaders to encourage young ones to go to school and be responsible of the society.

“We don’t want a woman who is pregnant to die in the communities. We want a woman who is pregnant to come to the hospital for antenatal and child delivery. In fact, one should come before 14 weeks so that we can plan for their delivery. Teenage pregnancy has its own complications, therefore, we want to work with traditional leaders so that early marriages are not allowed in the communities. We want the young ones to go to school and get an education and have a brighter future,” Dr Zulu said.

He added that Nyanje Hospital, being along the broader, should continue to attend to Mozambicans.

“Once somebody enters a hospital, even if he is from Mozambique, we do not need to chase them. We attend to them because they are human beings. Every human being that comes with a problem in the hospital, we attend to them. All we want is segregate the data so that we know how many patients at Nyanje are from Mozambique and how many are Zambians…” Dr Zulu said.

Acting hospital administrator Isaac Banda said, about the electricity crisis in the nation, that it affects members of staff when babies die due to lack of electricity.

“We are badly affected with load shedding, especially in maternity ward, not all babies are born strong, some are born premature and they need oxygen but you find power goes and the baby dies and the message that goes is that a child died at the hospital and a blame goes on us yet it’s somebody’s negligence,” he said. “We rejoiced when they said hospitals will be exempted from load-shedding but we don’t see anything. What others go through [load-shedding] that’s what we go through and every time it’s to refer to St Francis which is another cost but we hope all will be well soon.”

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