Botswana: Delivery Hitches Affect Vaccination

Molepolole — Unforeseen circumstances are impacting delivery of COVID-19 vaccines to cover the eligible population, Minister of Health and Wellness Dr Edwin Dikoloti has said.

Briefing Scottish Livingstone Hospital management during a visit Friday, Dr Dikoloti said procurement of required vaccines had been made and payment disbursed.

"We have already paid for the required vaccines and there is no question about the fact that government has been able to procure different vaccines that are currently delayed by the high demand for various vaccines from suppliers," stated Dr Dikoloti

The minister said Botswana was able to make a breakthrough in securing vaccines through President Dr Mokgweetsi Masisi's bilateral relations with other countries.

He encouraged eligible Batswana to continue registering for vaccination for ease of planning.

Registration would help prevent congestion which would otherwise defeat the purpose of fighting the spread of COVID-19, he said.

On another issue, Minister Dikoloti urged Kweneng District Health Management Team (DHMT) to ensure prompt and timeous delivery of services to reduce negative perceptions about health workers.

Dr Dikoloti also challenged the DHMT to guard against any form of corruption which he said was rife in procuring entities.

Following a guided tour of the hospital, Dr Dikoloti expressed gratitude over the level of cleanliness and called for the standard to be maintained.

He assured them that through decentralisation, decision making would be devolved for ease of operations and red tape reduction.

Speaking at the same event, MP for Molepolole South Mr Kabo Morwaeng called on health ministry officials to expedite actions towards addressing impediments to service delivery in the district.

"We need to be cautious and have proper planning processes that can improve on the way services are delivered to communities we serve," advised Mr Morwaeng who is Minister for Presidential Affairs, Governance and Public Administration.

He encouraged health workers to be courageous in delivering on their mandate despite the circumstances.

Meanwhile, health ministry acting deputy permanent secretary Dr Tshepo Machacha briefed on primary health care revitalisation plans.

He said to reduce backlog in district hospitals, outreach programmes, through which Princess Marina Hospital doctors conducted procedures such as hysterectomy, had been introduced.

The programme started in Mahalapye and would be rolled out to Molepolole sometime next month, he said.

Scottish Livingstone Hospital acting superintendent Dr John Chambo outlined several challenges such as shortage of doctors, understaffing and lack of progression which he said had led to low staff morale.

For his part, Kweneng District Council chairperson Mr Motlhophi Leo echoed Minister Dikoloti's sentiments on corruption arguing that the scourge was highly prevalent in government institutions.

Source : BOPA

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