Although the health ministry is allocated about N$7 billion of the country’s N$72. 8 billion budget, the amount falls short of the financial resources necessary to fully implement several of its activities within its programmes, health minister Dr Kalumbi Shangula has said.
However, Shangula, while motivating the ministry budget in parliament, said the restructuring process offers a good opportunity to realign the establishment of the ministry to its mandate.
He said in 2012, the ministry embarked on Project 2013 as per cabinet decisions to accelerate the training of required health professionals for the health sector.
According to him, more than 1 200 trainees are expected to graduate in various disciplines and cannot be recruited during this financial year due to lack of funds, though their service is needed.
He said the ministry intends to embark on an integrated electronic system for the collection, management and storage of health information to ensure speedy and secure access, as well as sharing of such information in real-time across geographic and health sector boundaries.
This, according to Shangula, can be achieved through the implementation of the electronic-health solutions.
However, Shangula said this project cannot be implemented without the necessary financial resources.
“The lack of some specialised services and equipment in public health facilities continues to be a challenge and has resulted in patients being referred to private facilities locally and abroad at great cost,” he told lawmakers.
He said during the past financial year, the cost for the treatment of state patients for chronic hemodialysis in private facilities amounted to N$58 million. “The cost was met mainly through the Special Fund for Patients with Uncommon Diseases. No additional funding is provided in the new Medium-term Expenditure Framework,” he explained.
He said the ministry is refocusing its strategic direction to the achievement of universal health coverage through the renewal of primary health
“Universal health care implies that every person receives quality promotive, preventive, curative, rehabilitative and palliative services he or she needs without suffering financial hardship in doing so,” he said.
He said the primary health care ensures that the Namibia health system meets the citizen’s health needs through comprehensive and integrated health services; systematically address the broader determinants of health and empowers individuals, families and communities to optimise their health.
He said the ministry, in collaboration with its critical stakeholders, will implement a model that will ensure the availability of medicines, vaccines and other pharmaceutical products at all health facilities at fair and reasonable prices.
“We will continue to identify and eliminate wastages within the system. We will continue to improve and perfect structures, systems and strategies in the implementation of the allocated financial resources and instil a sense of shared value among our workforce,” Shangula vowed.
More resources… Health minister Dr Kalumbi Shangula
Photo: Emmency Nuukala
2020-06-11 10:01:30 | 4 months ago