The initiative that was rolled out last week
* The fundraising initiative completed in under a week
* Over by a million kwacha to be channeled to the same cause
* Equipment to be procured are patient monitors; latex gloves; surgical masks; medical gowns; enoxaparin and heparin.
By Duncan Mlanjira
Within a week after Muslim Youth United (MYU) sent out an appeal for financial support from wellwishers, the initiative by this philanthropy arm of Muslims in Malawi has exceeded the target of K5 million to raise funds to procure COVID-19 medical equipment for Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital.
The appeal followed a follow up MYU made with relevant authorities at Queens following continued rise of COVID-19 patient admission at the referral hospital.
In his report, MYU chairperson Abdullah Panjwani said due to the rapidly increasing COVID-19 cases and deaths, discussions with the relevant authorities at Queens shall continue in order to arrange a second appeal targeted for next week.
Panjwani said MYU, which adopted two pediatric wards at Queens and named ‘We Care’ wards, will continue discussions with the hospitals authorities to find and address any more needs to “help our fellow brothers and sisters in humanity”.
“We humbly look forward to the continued support and love during these extremely challenging times that we’re all going through,” he said.
The appeal was launched Friday last week and as of Saturday, they surpassed the K5 million target by more than a million kwacha, “with many more donations pouring in”.
“All of the general charity (Sadqah) funds received since the appeal shall be channeled towards the fight against COVID at Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital, Insha-Allah, and any funds received within the next few weeks — unless stated otherwise — shall be used in that particular initiative as well.
“The necessary items are in the process of being purchased, and they shall be delivered to the hospital by early next week, with documented evidence of the contribution to be made public and shared also,” Panjwani said.
The medical equipment required include patient monitors; latex gloves; surgical masks; medical gowns; enoxaparin and heparin.
Last month, MYU donated 300 face shields to Queen Elizabeth’s COVID-19 health care workers in recognition of the noble work they are involved in the fight against the spread of the pandemic.
As a response to the COVID-19 pandemic in March last year, the grouping donated health products for the We Care wards that included 1,000 face masks, 50 washing stations, liquid dispensers and disinfectant fluids.
MYU also carried out a feeding programme at Queens every Wednesday two years ago in which they supplied food items for the kitchen and the grouping also donated physiotherapy equipment to Kachere Rehabilitation Centre, MACOHA and FEDOMA in Blantyre that included 120 wheelchairs, 20 walkers and 100 walking sticks.
And in October last year, MYU organised — for the second year running — a Blood Donation Camp at Mpingwe Sports Club for the Malawi Blood Transfusion Service.
Queens is currently treating the majority of patients currently under admissions across the country, forcing management to issue a public appeal of assistance, saying the COVID-19 situation there is very critical.
Hospital Director Dr. Samuel Mndolo told the media that the referral hospital is currently receiving over 5 patients a day, and expressed fears for the worst, saying the system will be overwhelmed soon at the rate pandemic is spreading.
Dr. Mndolo is quoted as saying they have since restricted visitations, restricted guardians to one only and ensuring strict adherence to other preventive measures such as wearing of masks.
As of Friday evening, the country registered six new COVID-19 related deaths, 71 new recoveries and 618 new cases, bringing the total number of active cases to 4,748.
Of these active cases, 146 are admitted in 18 hospitals across the country with Queens having the highest at 60 while 39 are in Lilongwe, seven in Mzimba North, six in Karonga and five in Zomba.