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Minister Assures Health Workers Of Priority In Covid-19 Fight

By Tikondane Vega

Thyolo, April 29, Mana: Minister of Persons with Disabilities and the Elderly, Clement Chiwaya says government will continue prioritising the welfare of health workers by ensuring that all health personnel are well trained and have Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) as the fight against Covid-19 goes on.

Chiwaya gave the assurance on Tuesday when he visited Thyolo District Hospital to see how the district is doing its work of fighting the Coronavirus and appreciate some of the preventive measures put in place.

He said government values the work being done by health workers in the Covid-19 fight, saying as such they need to be protected and that this would remain a priority for government in managing operations in the health sector.

“Government values the services you render to the community and in the process, we know that your lives and those of your families are at risk every day you come to work,” he said.

“The [preventive] measures the district has come up with so far shows that it is serious in containing the Covid-19.

It is not easy to come to work every day and meet people whom you do not know; hence, health workers need proper working gear in all sectors, especially this time when Malawi is fighting Covid-19 pandemic,” he added.

Chiwaya said government has put several interventions aimed at reaching out to people with disabilities with Covid-19 messages.

He, therefore, advised health workers in the district to be professional in discharging their duties due to the high demand of health services in the country.

Chiwaya then disclosed that the exercise of putting Covid-19 messages in Braille and audio is underway, targeting those with different disabilities.

According to the minister, government is also planning to bail out people with disabilities, including those in the streets with a special package in case of a lockdown.

Chiwaya also advised health workers to take proper care of all Covid-19 materials, stressing that they are meant to enhance measures to minimise the risk of being infected by the virus.

Member of Parliament for Chikwawa North, Owen Chomanika who accompanied Chiwaya, saluted Thyolo Hospital for putting stringent Covid-19 preventive measures, saying health workers in the district deserve special recognition for their hardworking spirit.

Chomanika said Covid-19 pandemic is real, urging health personnel in the district to reach out even to hard-to-reach areas with messages about the pandemic to avoid its further spread.

Director of Health and Social Services for Thyolo, Dr. Arnold Jumbe said the district will continue to line up activities in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. He said several others have already been done since the onset of the pandemic.

“When the news of Covid-19 broke out; we first conducted a meeting with our partners such that now all the stakeholders are doing a good job in complementing government efforts by spreading the news of Covid- 19 prevention.

“The district received K30 million that was used to train personnel from security guards above. Right now, we are well equipped and sensitization meetings are ongoing in the whole district,” Jumbe said.

“The problem is that we have porous borders which pose a threat to people in this district. We have so far received three Covid-19 suspected cases but all of them came negative after tests,” said Jumbe.

He said the hospital has a machine to carry out Covid-19 tests. However, he was quick to say they are waiting for software to be installed and that the district needs more resources to effectively deal with the pandemic.

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