Lilongwe District Director of Health and Social Services, Dr. Alinafe Mbewe Tambala thanking Rotary Club of Bwaila
* Bwaila Hospital continues to admit more COVID-19 patients
* Equipment include oxygen concentrators, heavy duty aprons and steel tables
By Moses Nyirenda, MANA
Rotary Club of Bwaila has moved in swiftly to assist Bwaila Hospital that is in its jurisdiction by donating COVID-19 medical equipment in the wake of the hospital registering more patients in the COVID-19 admission wards.
The equipment, worth over K2 million, include oxygen concentrators, heavy duty aprons and steel tables and on receiving the donation, Lilongwe District Director of Health and Social Services, Dr. Alinafe Mbewe Tambala said will go a long way in assisting COVID-19 patients being admitted at the hospital.
As of Tuesday, 12 of the 30 COVID-19 patients in Lilongwe were at Bwaila and 18 at Kamuzu Central.
There is a rapid increase in the number of admissions as of total 3,084 active cases, 117 were admitted in 15 hospitals across the country as of Tuesday with Blantyre’s Queen Elizabeth Central having highest figure at 52.
The other admissions are taking place in Mzimba North, Zomba, Mzimba South, Rumphi, Kasungu, Karonga, Nkhotakota, Balaka, Mulanje, Chikwawa Dowa and Mchinji.
Rotary Club of Bwaila secured the equipment in conjunction with Lilongwe Water Board (LWB) and Dr. Tambala applauded the donors their swift response following the second wave of the pandemic that has hit the court very severely.
“We have a lot of severe COVID-19 patients and as such we need more medical equipment to help them out. This donation will help us a lot in treating the patients,” Tambala said.
Rotary Club of Bwaila immediate past President, Mary Mkali said they are committed to do more charity work in the country in order to address social economic problems affecting the country, including assisting towards the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
Speaking at the presentation ceremony on Tuesday Mkali said her club decided to donate the medical equipment to Bwaila Hospital after observing the challenges which the facility is facing in assisting COVID-19 patients.
Mkali further said that her club realizes its role in assisting government in addressing various issues that affect the country particularly in the health sector.
“Bwaila Hospital is one of the hospitals that are treating COVID-19 patients in the country and we received reports that the hospital is receiving more patients yet it has inadequate medical equipment,” she said.
Representing LWB director of corporate services, Rachael Tsiga expressed commitment for the board to continue partnering with other bodies like Bwaila Rotary Club in a bid to contribute to the country’s development.
Rotarians raise funds to support institutions when there is need for such support.
Meanwhile, the country is under a State of National Disaster as declared by President Chakwera on Tuesday afternoon following the death of two of senior Cabinet Ministers — late Sidik Mia (Minister of Transport and Public Works as well as Malawi Congress Party (MCP) Vice-president) and late Lingson Belekanyama (Minister of Local Government and Rural Development).
The two succumbed to COVID-19 related complications on Tuesday to add on to over 60 other victims who have lost their lives since the New Year’s Day as the second wave of the pandemic takes its toll.
The deaths of these two prominent politicians and the rate of deaths since January 1, coupled with the exponential increase of COVID-19 news cases being registered on a daily basis, has led President Chakwera to declare the State of National Disaster — in accordance with Section 32(1) of the Disaster Preparedness and Relief Act (1991).
With effect from Tuesday, 12th January, 2021, all 28 districts to be treated as disaster areas. The highlights are:
* President, as responsible Minister, is empowered to make and enforce protective guidelines in all disaster areas
* State of disaster stays in force for 90 days
* Donations to be channeled to the Disaster Preparedness and Relief Fund to be used for civil protection and disaster management activities as directed by the President
* National public events on Chilembwe Day cancelled and presidential public functions postponed until further notice
* Legal Process of Declaration of State of Emergency has started
* Will empower President to impose downs and curfews
* Will empower President to impose limits on citizens’ freedoms
* Will unlock additional relief assistance from State coffers and financial institutions
* Requires approval of Defence and Security Committee of National Assembly
* There is three days of National Mourning in which all national flags are flying at half mast for three days across the country
* The President has convened Emergency Meeting of COVID-19 Taskforce
* President to actively lead efforts by his task force and give the nation regular updates
* President to help Taskforce develop additional measures that meet the demands of a state of disaster
* President to help Taskforce develop levels of severity for the pandemic and measures to enforce for each level
* Ordered Review of COVID-19 Guidelines. Vice-President to review existing guideline in collaboration with ministers of Helath, Homeland Security, Justice, Local Government, Education, Civil Education and Information
* Vice-President and Ministrial committee to submit recommended changes to guidelines to President and his Taskforce for adoption.—Additional reporting by Duncan Mlanjira, Maravi Express