By: Cecil Cole-Showers
The Free Health Care initiated by the Koroma administration and also supported by the Bio’s government continued to have obstacle and challenges as the babies are still dying in government hospitals across the country.
Some of these deaths are curable but the attitude of some of these health workers is sickening and disgusting as some of them gamble the lives of patients for meager money.
70% of our pregnant women visit government hospitals for treatment, 10% go to private clinics and the 20% relied heavily on Traditional Birth Attendance for trouble-free delivery.
If the government and the several Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) give the enabling environment to some of these TBAs and the required prerequisites they will do better than some of these mainstream nurses.
These are traditional women who have being in the business for decades and have the expertise and knowledge but lack the training and equipment to execute their work.
Other countries across the world jubilate whiles their wives, sisters or relatives give birth; but here in Sierra Leone is a different ball game as relatives have to invites Men of God to pray and intercede for safe delivery.
Some of our politicians and business magnates have to send their love ones out of the country to have safe delivery whiles the majority has to succumb to the numerous challenging in the health sector.
The government through the Ministry of Health and Sanitation should do the needful by equipping some of these hospitals for the challenges ahead.
The attitude of some of these doctors and nurses is nothing to write home about as they continued to expose the health sector to the chagrin of the public who if have the wherewithal will choose private hospitals against some of these public hospitals for their relatives.
90% of our political class has to go for medical checkup in Europe or Asia thereby exposing and failing to upgrade our much needed health sector for the electorates who voted them in power.
The government through the Ministry of Health should patiently monitor some of these private clinics (Chinese and Arabs) as their operation in the country is helping to escalate the health challenges in the country.
The failure by the Ministry of Health to monitor some of these private hospitals is also a contributing factor for the high infant mortality rate in the country.
Some of these Chinese and Arabs clinics employed untrained and unqualified nurses at the expense of the hapless patients who are seeking for good health.
The proliferation of Arabs and Chinese clinics in the country should be speedily monitored and regulated by the Ministry of Health and the Sierra Leone Pharmacy Board if only these people are serious and thoughtful on the health issues of Sierra Leoneans.
Over 60% of these Arabs and Chinese clinics are bulldozing their way in the country without any proper documentation from the Ministry of Health, Sierra Leone Pharmacy Board or the Medical and Dental Association.
The above institutions are expected to monitor and even closed some of these mushroom clinics who are emerging on a daily basis in the country.
Pregnant women in hard to reach areas heavily rely on traditional birth attendance (TBA) for safe delivery; and if successive governments are serious of the well-being of their electorates they should continue to empowered and fortified these TBAs by organizing frequent training and providing the necessary tools because the role they are playing is critical in the provinces to save pregnant women for safe delivery.
The Ministry of Health should know that there is nothing like Free Health Care in some of these government hospitals as beneficiaries have to grease the palm of health workers to have better treatments when the need arise.
Again, some of these nurses are without pin codes, they have being tirelessly given their services to the public without pay and the only way they can make money is from patients and also steal drugs from the hospital.
The Bio’s administration should pay great attention in overhauling the health system across the country to instilled confidence and assurances to Sierra Leoneans who are of contrary view.
The Minster of Health should stop the talking and focus on action plan that can help lift-up our health division to higher height. Save the babies from unwanted dying.