Lack of space at Opuwo health facilities raised

10 Aug 2017 14:00pm
WINDHOEK, 10 AUG (NAMPA) - There is a need for an additional health centre or clinic in the regional capital of Kunene, a supervisor of the nursing staff at the Opuwo District Hospital said on Wednesday.
Lisias Ashivudhi submitted the request during a public hearing at Opuwo, conducted by the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Gender Equality, Social Development and Family Affairs.
He said the hospital at Opuwo was constructed in 1973 when the population in the area was smaller than it is now.
“The patient population has grown six times since then and the facilities have become too small and understaffed,” Ashivudhi said.
Because of this problem, patients have to queue as early as 02h00 to be attended to at the earliest, both at the clinic and the hospital.
One complaint from the community was that there is no doctor attending to patients at the clinic and when they are referred to a doctor, it takes more than a week, if not a month, before they are seen.
Ashivudhi, who admitted that this is the case, explained that it is because of the infrastructure at the clinic and the fact that all rooms at the clinic are occupied.
This, according to the community, is why they requested the hospital management to allow them to sleep in the waiting area of the hospital when they cannot be treated on the same day and have to wait for another day.
The request of sleeping in the waiting area, Ashivudhi said, cannot be entertained by management due to the regulations health institutions are governed by, which allows for only admitted persons to sleep in such facilities.
Deputy chairperson of the committee, Godhard Kasuto said the input at the meeting would be presented to relevant authorities.
He also encouraged the offices of the governor, regional councillors and the town council, as well as that of the health directorate to arrange meetings with communities to share health related information regularly. This, Kasuto said, will help the community to understand the challenges faced by the health sector in the region.
The committee will visit Kamanjab on Thursday and Khorixas on Friday, followed by a number of places in the Erongo Region.