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EVERY DAY IT’S THE SAME THING

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Madam,

Must we discuss the health system every day or we should now be content with the fact that we do not have a stable one? This is a question I find myself introspecting on, as I wonder whether there will be any form of relief health-wise for emaSwati. From people not getting attended to on time at the biggest referral hospital, to a shortage of healthcare workers which results in patients not receiving timely assistance; to a shortage in drugs and medical supplies, it all becomes a little bit too overwhelming. What was previously regarded as a health crisis developed into a full-blown catastrophe. The healthcare system in the country is in its final stages before total annihilation and unfortunately for the population at large this is in no way an exaggeration.

shortages

From drug shortages, to food issues, to lack of medical supplies and dilapidated infrastructure, the public health system in the country has clearly seen better days. At this point, there is no amount of reasoning that could explain the prevailing health issues in the country and I am afraid it might even take a miracle to pull us out of the cesspool we are in. I fully understand that the cause of the failing system might be a shortage in funds but what I would like to get clarity on is whether there weren’t other options besides the decisions we took when it came to suppliers and other administrative issues, which may be influencing our current situation. We also need some level of honesty and accountability from the executive of the health sector regarding the issues currently faced by the different public health institutions around the country.

Healthcare is by far the most important sector in any country and has to be addressed with precision and great attention to detail. Therefore, the current state shows that there are clearly gaps in the administration of the health system, something seems amiss. At this point, it is becoming more and more difficult to praise anything the Health Ministry actually does and looking at the way things are going, there needs to be repercussions for the disaster that is our public health system.

conditions

It is also unfair to expect healthcare workers to work under these conditions. Come to think of it, they are the ones who  get criticised once patients do not receive the assistance they require and they are the ones who are held liable when the conditions of the patients deteriorate or the patients succumb to illnesses due to lack of appropriate medication and supplies.
Healthcare workers in the country are currently working on a wing and prayer and one can only hope that what is left of the health system will be enough to sustain us in the long-term.
Speaking of the long-term, it is my hope and prayer that the health executive is going back to the drawing board and figuring out ways to amend the situation and get more sustainable solutions going forward. What is happening is not acceptable and we are literally playing Russian roulette at this point, just waiting for people to die one by one.

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