The regional councillor for !Nami#nus Constituency, Jan Scholtz, accompanied by Lüderitz local authority councillors recently visited Lüderitz State Hospital to discuss with management the challenges that hospital staff and the community face.
Dr Davies Nkalamo a senior doctor at the hospital said it only has three doctors – instead of five – which is not adequate to attend to all activities in hospital service, clinic services on outreach at Oranjemund, Rosh Pinah and Aus clinics, and to cover other districts.
Nkalamo said the Lüderitz hospital is grappling with the challenge of a shortage of doctors and nurses, which prevents the smooth operation of hospital services.
A lack of accommodation for staff is another major concern for hospital management.
The mayor of Lüderitz, Hilaria Mukapuli, advised the hospital management to always approach the Lüderitz local authority to inform them about concerns regarding staff accommodation, so that local councillors can tackle the issue promptly.
A further challenge they face is the distance from Lüderitz to Windhoek, which is too long for transporting critically ill patients who have to endure almost 10 hours in an ambulance.
Therefore, they requested the Ministry of Health and Social Services to consider the need to transport critically ill patients by air.
Head of primary health care Hendrina Andreas said the hospital is in the process of integrating services, which have already been assessed. The hospital is planning to offer different services at one place.
For example, a mother who takes her sick child to hospital also needs family planning counselling – these services, the treatment of the child and family planning for the mother, could be done at the same place.
Scholtz told management there is a private company which is ready to build a clinic at Area 7, which is close to the majority of residents.