People from Kukalanga village in the area of Traditional Authority Chimwala in Mangochi district have pleaded with government to consider opening the maternity wing at Kukalanga Clinic in order to solve the challenges being faced by pregnant women in the area.
One of the concerned women in the area, Edina Bonso, revealed that the maternity wing and guardian shelter were built in 2015, but until now the government is failing to deploy a nurse cum midwife to keep the facility in operational.
Bonso said: “Women here at Kukalanga village are facing many challenges. During the time of giving birth, they are supposed to travel all the way to Mangochi district hospital to seek medical services, a journey which cost them a lot of money including catering for food.”
The situation leaves the lives of both pregnant women and their unborn children in great danger.
“The situation leaves the women with no choice but deliver at home. Those who try to travel to the district hospital could deliver on their way. The most painful thing is that women could give birth in presence of men and children,” she added.
Chairman for the Health Advisory Committee (HAC) in the area, John Alison, concurred with Bonso saying their efforts to plead with district health officials proved futile and they are tired of knocking the doors of the authorities.
“ We have repeatedly pleaded with the district health office to send us the nurse but our plea has always landed into the deaf ears. The maternity wing building is already available and in 2015 we managed to build the guardian shelter with the support from the villagers. We are asking the government to intervene so that lives are saved,” said Alisoni.
Mangochi District Health Officials are yet to comment on the matter.
Mangochi is one of the districts which register high teenage pregnancies in the country.