OMAUNI - The Deputy Minister of Health and Social Services, Juliet Kavetuna, has called on Omauni residents to use health facilities the government has provided to them.
Kavetuna made these remarks last Thursday when she officiated at the Omauni Primary Health Care Clinic and staff accommodation in the Ohangwena region.
She said it is government’s duty to provide service delivery structures, but it is up to the community to make use of the facilities.
“It is the community’s responsibility to make sure that all mothers in this area have attended antenatal care here and they deliver in the health facilities,” said Kavetuna.
Moreover, she urged village leaders present at the event to inform their communities to take their children for immunisation and those who are sick to the clinic early, rather than wait until it is too late. “Cattle owners please take care of your cattle herders and make sure they come for treatment at this facility. We must promote health, prevent diseases and treat the sick.
We would like to see ailments reducing in the surrounding communities,” said Kavetuna. The Omauni area was found ideal for the location of the clinic, as it is far from other health facilities, and because community members were finding it difficult to access health services.
The clinic is situated about 67 kilometres north east of Okongo District Hospital and 9km from the Okongo-Mpungu tarred road.
Apart from the completion of this clinic in the previous financial year, the ministry also successfully completed other projects such as the tiling of Okongo Hospital OPD at a cost of N$315 061, renovation of Engela hospital TB ward at a cost of N$982 000, erection of a new prefabricated clinic at Ondobe in Ondobe constituency.
Presently, Okongo District Hospital does not have its own doctors, and is only supported by two medical officers from Engela hospital. According to Kavetuna, Okongo District Hospital is supposed to assist with post-mortem services in the region, but in the absence of doctors, these services are done in Rundu and Oshakati hospitals, which has been a source of frustration to grieving families, as they cannot bury their loved ones on time. Kavetuna assured the gathering that her ministry is working tirelessly to address the situation.
Speaking at the occasion, Ohangwena Governor Usko Nghaamwa commended government for bringing services closer to the people.
He further urged staff members to safeguard the clinic and respect each other.
By Hilma Nakanduungile*
*Hilma Nakanduungile is an Information Officer in the Ministry of Information and Communication Technology (MICT), who is based in the Ohangwena Region.