The Ministry of Health and Sanitation has formed two different teams for supportive supervision and monitoring of health care service delivery in all hospitals and health centres in the country.
According to the Deputy Minister, Mr. Mohamed Daudis Koroma, who doubles as leader of Team One, the Exercise is not a witch hunt, but a move that aims at improving treatment and care for patients as well as understanding the gaps and challenges faced by doctors, nurses, midwives and other health staff.
Mr. Koroma noted that unless health workers are committed and dedicated to service, devoid of self, and work ethically and professionally, standards would continue to drop in our health facilities, hence the continued alarming rate of our maternal and child health indicators.
He observed that conditions of service still remain a problem, adding that plans are currently underway to address the situation with a view to providing an enabling working environment that would address the brain drain in the medical profession.
Mr. Koroma commended the 20-man team that started the operation as well as the committed workers that were met working during the unannounced visit and encouraged others to follow the good example of their dedicated colleagues.
Commenting on the exercise the Deputy Chief Medical Officer and Director of Primary Health Care, Dr. Alhassan Seisay and the Chief Nursing Officer, Matron Mabel Carew noted the constrains of the nurses and doctors which included inadequate medical supplies, staff shortage in manning the wards, including porters and cleaners, and lack of incentives for night duty workers.
The Deputy Chief Medical Officer said while empathizing with the situation, staff of the hospitals should put the life of their patients first, adding that negligence in executing their sacred task would be treated with serious concern.
The Chief Nursing Officer, Matron Mabel Carew who happens to be in the Deputy Minister’s team, said three hospitals were covered in the East end of Freetown, and three in the West end. They included Connaught, Lumley, PCMH (Cottage), Rokupa and Ola During Children’s Hospitals.
The Chief Nursing Officer cautioned nurses on Dress Code, pointing out that nurses are supposed to be distinguished from their patients, and those found wanting in subsequent operations would face disciplinary action.
The Matron reiterated the need for commitment and dedication to service and disclosed plans to continue the exercise country wide.
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Newspaper in Freetown, Sierra Leone.