Maputo — Maputo Central Hospital (HCM), Mozambique's largest health unit, received on Thursday a wide variety of surgical and medical supplies, personal protective equipment, hospital furniture, and physical rehabilitation material to boost the capacity to treat various forms of cancer.
The donation, by the Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI) which is budgeted at about 163,000 US dollars, consists of supplies such as surgical equipment for paediatric and obstetric-gynecological cancer treatment, hospital beds, ventilators, infusion pumps, patient examination tables, and anesthetic material.
The HCM general director, Mouzinho Saide, said the donation from CHAI, in partnership with the Medical Bridge, a Houston based non-profit entity, and the MD Anderson Cancer Centre, comes at the right time for the country's largest hospital with a great responsibility in health care provision, for many patients across the country.
"The donation comes at a pretty critical time when the use of personal protective equipment has been recording strong demand because of the Covid-19 pandemic," Saide said, insisting that the equipment must be given very careful use, so as to contribute to the improvement of health care and services to the patients.
Mozambique records every year some 25,000 new cases of various forms of cancer with a death toll estimated at about 17,000. Cervical cancer, breast cancer, prostate cancer and paediatric cancer are among the most common across the country and HCM management staff believes the equipment donated will contribute towards easing the burden.
The Director of the National Cancer Programme, Cesaltina Lorenzoni, pointed out that the country's great challenges consist of training specialised medical staff, cancer detection and diagnosis, and expanding the service across the country.
Lorenzoni, who is also the HCM Scientific and Pedagogical Director, declared that there is an Expansion Plan (2019-2029) intended to increase threefold the current seven oncological experts for the whole country. But there have also been health missions from abroad who visit Mozambique to share and train local medical staff in cancer treatment.
CHAI representative, Helder Mendes, said that the initiative was very happy and proud of the partnership and hopes the medical equipment will contribute significantly to the cure and recovery of the patients for a rapid return to their productive life.
CHAI, founded by the former US president, Bill Clinton, and the MD Anderson Cancer Centre, have joined efforts and are mobilizing resources to enhance the country's actions in the fight against various forms of cancer.