By Nation Reporter
MEDICAL staff at Lusaka’s Chawama clinic have come under fire from members of the public for alleged unprofessional conduct, accusing them of practices such as extortion and harassment of patients.
The patients, who expressed disgust at the manner in which the health institution was being run, accused the staff of causing emotional trauma to patients who visited the clinic for medical attention.
But Lusaka provincial medical officer Kennedy Malama assured patients and members of the public that his office would investigate the concerns.
Dr. Malama said it was the mandate of the health sector to provide quality health services to the people.
He implored members of the public to alert Government on such irregularities at public health institutions.
“Such feedback from the people is important because we use it to continuously improve the provision of health services. “We will investigate this issue and culprits will be dealt with; so it is important that we are informed of any irregularities at public health institutions,” Dr. Malama said.
An elderly woman who identified herself as Nakulu Mubanga said the health facility had been transformed into a ‘‘disaster area’’ with nurses being the chief culprits.
“We spent almost the whole day queuing for treatment only to be told that there is no medicine and we have to look for it elsewhere.
“I am 69 years old and terribly ill, where do I get the energy and money to buy the medicines? This clinic is no longer what it used to be in those days, nurses are rude,” she lamented.
Another patient Mutinta Hakalima, who recently gave birth at the clinic, accused nurses at the maternity ward of harassing women in labour.
She called on Government to inspect the ward often and take stern action against the culprits.
“I gave birth at the clinic two weeks ago, I went there hoping that I will be helped to give birth but I was shocked by the way I was treated together with other women.
“The nurses were rude; we were not given the attention we needed. It was a horrible experience and I think Government should start inspecting these facilities and see how women are treated by the so-called nurses.”