Coronavirus: Health authorities call for financial assistance

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By Kelvin Tembo

Health authorities in Mzimba district are appealing for financial assistance in preparedness and response to the deadly coronavirus.

Mzimba is yet to a register a coronavirus case but there is a high possibility of the outbreak, due to people who travel from South Africa.

The district health office has launched a prevention and response strategy but calls for adequate funding for implementation.

Despite not yet registering a case of Covid-19 the Mzimba district Health office has been busy preparing for a possible outbreak.

Among the activities, the office has been disseminating messages about the disease and promoting hygiene, conducting surveillance, decongesting the district hospital and empowering health workers on handling cases.

In addition the office has also been preparing on a large scale mobilization of resources for procurement of personal protective equipment and establishing makeshift facilities to be used as treatment centres.

However due to insufficient funding the health office is yet to finalise all the preparations, a development that has pushed it to call for funding.

According to the Director of Health and Social Services Lumbani Munthali, they need additional PPEs like gumboots, gowns, goggles and headgear.

He says that though they managed to procure some of the equipment with the money they received from the government, they are still looking for more to avoid being overwhelmed in the event of an outbreak.

In their contingency plan on Covid-19 preparedness and response, the district health office came up with a budget of MK256 but the government has since funded it with MK65 million.


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