Deputy minister worried over lack of specialists at Zomba Mental Hospital

Deputy Minister of Health Chrissy Kalamula Kanyasho has expressed worry over non-availability of highly specialized staff at Zomba Mental Hospital.

Zomba Mental Hospital, Malawi’s largest psychiatric referral hospital is operating without a psychologist, a social worker, a clinical psychologist and an occupational therapist.

Speaking during her visit to the hospital on Wednesday, Kanyasho described the situation as pathetic.

Kanyasho said among others the psychologist could have been helping in certifying the recovery of the patients.

Principal Psychiatrist, Dr. Olive Liwimbi said the problem are affecting the operations of the hospital.

“These are highly specialized areas and we need individuals trained in those particular areas to deliver that particular service.

“Nursing staff will try and sort out some of the social issues as far as they can but they don’t have expertise that a social worker has and so you have for example patients that have been in hospital for years because nobody has the expertise of how to trace their homes ,” she said.

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