‘MEDICAL STAFF SHORTAGE CAUSING QUEUES’

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By NATION REPORTER

PATIENTS spend long hours in queues and in many instances go away unattended because of shortage of medical staff in health facilities, a nurse has disclosed.

In an interview with the Daily Nation, the Lusaka-based nurse explained that it was not only Matero level one hospital, Chawama and Kanyama healthcare facilities where patients waited for hours in long queues but that this was a countrywide problem.

The nurse said there was shortage of man power especially doctors and urged government to consider seriously investing in the training of more doctors.

“We do not have enough doctors in the health facilities. In most cases you

find that there is only one doctor attending to many patients the whole day such that they do not even finish attending to them because there  are too many patients and few doctors.

“As nurses we sometimes try to see if patients can be attended from the casualty before they go but you find that the place is also full of waiting patients and they go back just like that,” she said.

“When clinic books are taken to the doctor’s room in most cases there is just one doctor depending on the clinic he runs, which is not supposed to be the case,” she said.

The nurse also claimed there were few dedicated doctors in many government health facilities who spend the whole day attending to patients.

She said government should seriously consider looking into this as the health of Zambians was being compromised.

She added that even when new staff were employed, very few of them were committed to work the whole day.  She urged government to come up with measures to ensure that medical personnel spend more time at government hospitals and clinics for more people to be attended to.

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