THE upgrading of Chilenje and Matero clinics in Lusaka are nearing completion and the two clinics will operate as full district hospitals.
Deputy Health minister Chitalu Chilufya said once the two clinics were completed they will improve the health services in the area and help decongest the University Teaching Hospital.
In an interview with the Daily Nation, Dr Chilufya said about 95 percent works have been completed and the facility is expected to be handed over to Government next month.
Dr. Chilufya said clinics in Lusaka had been earmarked for upgrading to first level hospitals in order to deliver health services closer to the people, saying Chipata clinic was the first to be upgraded followed by Chawama, Kabwata, Chelstone and Kanyama.
He said the facilities will also take the required health services closer to the people, thereby reducing infant and maternal mortality rates and also to help decongest the Levy Mwanawasa General Hospital in Lusaka.
Dr Chilufya explained that the rehabilitation of Chilenje clinic includes the construction of a double storey structure comprising outpatient department, maternity, eight wards, administration, ancillary facilities as well as provision of medical equipment.
Dr Chilufya said Government made the right decision to upgrade the health centres because Matero clinic seemed incapacitated and residents had to wait long hours before they could be attended to.
He added that the upgrade will further benefit the high catchment population in the area with improved health care services in the capital city.
He said it was in line with Government’s goal of providing quality health care to all Zambians and it will reduce the burden of health care accessibility to surrounding communities.
And Kesa Mubita, a Chalala resident, commended Government for the improved access to public health services, adding that a facility was attending to patients close to 80, but once completed it will be able to treat more than that.
He said improved medical care in the area was long overdue as sick people in his community had to go to UTH or Levy Mwanawasa hospital to access health services.
Mercy Changwe said over the years, the challenge of fewer medical practitioners and health care facilities at Chilenje clinic had resulted in long queues and delayed attendance to emergencies.
The Ministry of Health has embarked on the upgrading and building of 650 health posts countrywide.