Doctors Worldwide has been working in Malawi on our Health Systems Strengthening project since 2018, supporting and developing the essential health services in one of the poorest regions in the country, Mangochi. With Malawi ranked as the 3rd poorest in the world by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in 2018, Doctors Worldwide has been collaborating with a local NGO to support the country’s struggling healthcare system, and now helps over 10,000 patients a month.
One of the key areas of difficulty in Malawi is the lack of clinical access and trained staff available in the country’s healthcare system. We are supporting 3 clinics in Malawi, providing each of these with extra clinical officers and medical assistants to allow for better quality consults, in addition to the introduction of a cohort of new nursing staff to open the first maternity unit in the Mangochi region. In addition to the increased numbers of clinical staff, Doctors Worldwide also provides extra support such as PPE and IPC resources, especially necessary during the current COVID-19 pandemic.
Recently, a new solar-powered water pump was installed and secured to enable access to clean water for the Makanjira clinic, replacing its previously damaged pump. For individuals like Mr Walusa, a 68 year old asthmatic patient who used to have to walk 15km over rough and ragged roads to his nearest government facility in order to receive medical assistance, the introduction of a new and better staffed clinic means he and the rest of the surrounding community now only need to travel 1km for treatment. In addition, the presence of a new pump also means the ease of access to clean water for both staff and patients is increased.
“Access to water is a privilege in most areas of Makanjira due to the scarcity of clean fresh water. Clean water is essential for the clinic especially with plans to build a maternity wing at Makanjira. With access to clean water, our medical staff will now be able to provide quality healthcare services to our patients. Support from Doctors Worldwide has eased our burden and enabled us to concentrate on improving our service delivery.”Local Partner, Programs Coordinator.