LUSAKA provincial medical director Simulyamana Choonga has recalled all health workers who are on leave.
In an internal memorandum addressed to senior medical superintendents, district health directors, and medical superintendents, Dr Choonga said there is urgent need for additional personnel due to the escalating cholera outbreak.
“As you may be aware, there is currently an outbreak of cholera in the Province and other parts of the country. This has led to an increased demand for Human Resources to respond to the outbreak,” Dr Choonga said.
Dr Choonga announced the Ministry of Health’s directive for the immediate recall of all medical and non-medical staff to stabilize human resources in various service delivery points.
“In line with the Terms and Conditions of Service for the Public Service, as stated in No. 138 (a), the Ministry of Health has directed that all medical and non-medical staff must be recalled with immediate effect. This measure is intended to stabilize Human Resources needs in all service delivery points,” he said.
(Mwebantu, Saturday, 6th January, 2024)
Chainama Hills Hospital highlights neglect and attention deficiency as key factors in declining school attendance among boys
CHAINAMA Hills Hospital has identified neglect and attention deficiency as significant contributors to the decreasing enrolment of boys in schools.
According to the hospital, mental health issues, particularly attention deficiency, play a crucial role in the decreasing attendance of boy children in classrooms.
This follows a statement issued by the Minister of Education Douglas Syakalima, who stated that, statistically, more girls than boys participated in grade 12 examinations last year.
The figures indicated that 49.40 percent of the candidates were boys, while 50.60 percent were girls.
The hospital which actively advocates for mental health, has suggested that implementing mental health programs in schools could be a crucial intervention to encourage more boys to stay in school.
Hospital spokesperson George Tafuna, attributed the reluctance of boys to attend school to attention-seeking behavior.
Dr Tafuna said the current focus on educating girl children has left some boys feeling neglected, leading to a decline in their attendance.
He called for increased parental care and attention for boys, emphasizing that some turn to negative behaviors to cope with attention deficiency.
Dr Tafuna pointed out the need for a balanced approach, with equal advocacy for both genders, and urged the introduction of mental health programs in schools.
He also noted that a significant number of boys aged between 13 and 15 years are being admitted to Chainama Hills Hospital for drug and substance abuse issues.
Dr Tafuna stressed the importance of interventions to address the underlying mental health challenges faced by these boys.
“The problem today is that we do not have many organisations advocating for the boy child as much as they are doing for the girl child. We need a system in which both genders are looked after. We need more programs also in mental health being introduced in schools. It is why we have been advocating for children and adolescent mental clinics in the country,” he said.
Dr Tafuna told Mwebantu in an interview that the Ministry of Education should look into interventions with stakeholders to address the matter.
“Sometimes you find a system where the boy child is left at home by both parents who work and expect him to go to school. But because of lack of attention, they abscond and divert to do other illicit things such as drug abuse. Some are even exposed to films which teach them how to commit offences, avoid school and also commit suicide. This is why we have less boy children taking interest in school,” he suggested.
(Mwebantu, Saturday, 27th January, 2024)
18 more cholera deaths, 457 new cases recorded
EIGHTEEN more cholera related death have been recorded in the last 24 hours.
Out of the 18 deaths recorded, 16 are believed to have died within their respective communities while two died at the treatment centres.
Minister of Health, Sylvia Masebo and her counterparts Local Government Minister Gary Nkombo and Minister of Water and Sanitation, Mike Mposha have assured the nation that Government is putting in intervention measures to combat Cholera across the country.
Ms Masebo also that for families who cannot be allowed to visit their loved ones in this critical moment, mechanisms to have them call the health facilities are being put in place.
Ms Masebo was speaking during a briefing in Lusaka today.
She said Government together with health personnel as well as well wishers and stakeholders are working hard to ensure lives are saved.
“We have recorded in the last 24 hours a total of 457 new cases. The next new cases are being distributed as follows, Lusaka which is the epicenter has 406 cases, 28 cases in Central province, seven cases in Eastern, Five in Southern and four cases, one each on the Copperbelt, Muchinga, Western and Northern.
On the Copperbelt, Western and Muchinga we have what we call imported cases, while Luapula remains at high alert with no cases.”
“Currently in admission across the country, we have 1,117 in the last 24 hours, while we have discharged 588. The total number of cases recorded since the outbreak is 7,830. We have also recorded in the last 24 hours 18 deaths. Of these, 16 occurred in the community, while two at the cholera treatment centres,” she said.
She said there is a decrease of Cholera cases which can be attributed to a proactive health stuff and community awareness.
Ms Masebo emphasised the need to adhere to hygiene measures and to also quickly rush patients with symptoms to the nearest health facilities.
And Local Government Minister said Government is in overdrive in ensuring that they facilitate people with the needed amenities.
Mr Nkombo said his ministry has also intensified measures to stop indiscriminate disposal of any waste adding that street vending is one such issue which has contributed to the cholera outbreak.
He said if the indiscriminate disposal of waste does not stop, Government will be forced to fine perpetrators through use of the Statutory Instrument against indiscriminate disposal of waste.
Meanwhile, Mr Mposha said his ministry is in the process of installing water tanks and is mobilizing emptying of pit latrines.
He said his Ministry will adhere to President Hakainde Hichilema’s directive of burying shallow wells which have contributed to the outbreak of Cholera.
(Mwebantu, Thursday, 11th January, 2024)
27 people die of cholera
TWENTY SEVEN cholera related deaths have been recorded in the last 24 hours, Health Minister, Sylvia Masebo has disclosed.
Ms Masebo said of the deaths recorded, 26 are in Lusaka, while one is from Kabwe district.
She also disclosed that the country has recorded 567 new cholera cases in the last 24 hours and that 504 of those cases are from Lusaka.
Speaking when she gave an update on the cholera situation in the country at heroes stadium in Lusaka which is being used as the treatment center,Ms Masebo said government is on top of things and has called for cooperation from members of the public.
“In the last 24 hours, we have recorded 567 new cases country wide. Although most are in Lusaka which has 504 cases out of the 567. The accumulative total number of cases since October is now 5,463. Sadly we have lost 27 patients in the last 24 hours. 26 are from Lusaka. This brings the accumulative total of deaths to 223,” she said.
Ms Masebo said despite the deaths, there is a positive recovery rate being that 350 people have been discharged in the past 24 hours.
She said presently 1,059 people have been admitted in the health facilities.
“We need to ensure that those having symptoms are quickly brought to the hospital because 80 to 90 percent of the deaths are as a result of late coming to the health facilities. Do not wait for symptoms to exceed,” she said.
She added that other line ministries such as the Ministry of Defence are also on ground to help bring the situation under control adding also the vaccines are expected on the country soon.
(Mwebantu, Sunday, 7th January, 2024)