By Tione Andsen
Lilongwe, November 1, Mana: Ministry of Health has admitted that lack of financial resources has hindered the proper implementation of National Community Health Strategy.
Deputy Director for Preventive Health Services in the Ministry of Health, Doreen Ali made the admission Monday during Community Health Programme Coordination meeting on Mid-term Review of the National Community Health Strategy 2017-2022 held at Sunbird Lilongwe hotel.
She said the strategy had projected a US$ 407 million budget line for the implementation to be supported by government and partners but only half of the said amount has been made available.
Ali said the plan had proposed to recruit over 7,000 Health Surveillance Assistants (HSAs) with the five year period only 2,040 have been recruiting which was still putting pressure on the few that are there.
“We are still working with the department on human resource to see how best the recruitment drive should be harnessed in order to improve on service delivery,” the Deputy Director said.
She said one HSA was serving over 1,260 people while the Ministry of Health policy recommends that HSA should serve 1,000 people within working area
Ali said the strategy had planned to construct 900 health posts throughout the country but only 10 have been built with the help of Malawi Red Cross Society and GTI.
“We are expecting to have 55 more health posts to be constructed soon; paper work, designing and biding by contractors are being done within the project implementation sites,” she added.
The Deputy Director believe that community health services requires the participation of all stakeholders saying partners need to join hand with the government in order to support communities with various services.
Amref-Africa Advocacy Officer, Tuwambirire Mwaungulu said the meeting was looking at the six thematic areas the strategy had put in place to be implemented within a five year period.
He said the report by the consult has revealed that there some gaps within the implementation framework of the strategy which need to be worked out by government and partners.
“As stakeholders and partners, we are ready to support the government in whatever investment is being made in the community health service delivery. We need to collaborate in order to reduce the gaps that have been identified by the consultant,” Mwaungulu pointed out.