Several clinics in Bong County are experiencing severe drugs shortages, a situation that has reportedly resulted to the death of several children in the region.Our correspondent says some of the clinics that have been highly hit by drugs shortages include Yila Clinic, Gbalatuah Clinic and Zebay Clinic.
Some officials at some of these clinics have been afraid to speak to reporters concerning the lack of drugs, but some have called on government through the County Health Team for quick intervention.
Due to the lack of drugs, residents of Gbalatuah and Zebay have expressed serious frustration, many of whom are threatening to march at the compound of the County Superintendent Esther Nyamah Walker to draw the attention of local authorities.
“Whenever we go at the clinic, nurses will tell us there is no tablet, the only thing we receive from them are prescriptions. And we don’t have money to buy drugs,” Krubo Massaquoi, a mother of five children told our Bong County correspondent.
Mrs. Massaquoi says she recently lost one of her children as a result of malaria, adding that the government needs to quickly help their clinic in Zebay with drugs.“I will say my son died of malaria because when I took him to the hospital, the nurses only gave me some pieces of papers which they say I should take … to drugs store. But there is no drugs store or even money, so me and my mother started applying herbs but [to] no avail,” she explains.
“I had six children but they are now five because the malaria recently killed one of them” Mrs. Massaquoi adds.She promises to organize all of the women in the district to do peaceful march at the compound of the Superintendent to draw the superintendent’s attention to the matter.Our correspondent says a seven – year – old boy recently died of malaria in Gbalatuah due to the lack of medication.
The man who has been helping the deceased’s mother has gone blind for more than four years, and so the mother is left struggling alone to feed the rest of the children and send them to school.
Garman Flomo, the mother of the dead child told our correspondent that her son became sick and died after four days.
She explains that when they first started experiencing some unusual behaviors by her son, they immediately took him to the Gbalatuah clinic.
But when they entered the clinic, Garman says nurses informed them that the clinic lacked drugs.
Meanwhile, the Officer in Charge of the Yila Clinic in District #1 is calling on government, through the Bong County Health Team for supply of essential drugs at the health facility.
Yila Clinic provides medications to thousands of residents of that locality including parts of Nimba County along the St. John River.Briefing this Paper, the OIC Daniel Sumo says as a result of the lack of essential drugs at the health center, nurses are now giving prescriptions to patients.
He maintains that as they prescribe the drugs, majority of the patients do not go by the prescription, warning that it is dangerous to their health.Mr. Sumo says besides violating prescriptions, patients in the area usually travel far distances to buy drugs because they are not available in clinics nearby.
When contacted about the situation, the Chief Administrator of the Bong County Health Team Jonah N. Togbah said the challenges are everywhere.
He adds that they are currently appealing to the Ministry of Health for supply to those clinics.
Mr. Togbah states that the County Health Team even lacks adequate budgetary support to effectively operate.
“We do not have money, our ambulances are all spoiled and no money to fix them. All we can tell our nurses and people is that they should remain calm as we engage the Ministry to quickly intervene,” he says.Mr. Togbah wants huge budgetary allocations from government especially for the three Hospitals in the County.Phebe, Bong Mines and CB Dumbar Hospitals are facing serious constraints ranging from low number of ambulances and power supply to drugs shortages.
By Joseph Titus Yekeryan in Bong–Edited by Winston W. Parley