LILONGWE (Malawi NewsNow ) — Malawi Minister of Health Dr Jean Kalirani has hit at the country’s donors for their tendency of criticizing government’s low budget allocation to the health sector saying donors have an obligation to assist than criticizing low financing of health sector.
The World Bank in an aide-memoire dated April 10 2015 whose findings were compiled by a World Bank mission on procurement for health sector under the Nutrition and HIV and Aids Project addressed to Secretary to the Treasury Mr Ronald Mangani, World Bank country manager for Malawi, Ms Laura Kullenberg, faulted the country’s health sector supply chain, describing it as disintegrated with a lot of parallel systems.
The US government through its Malawi Ambassador Ms Virginia Palmer also bemoaned low funding for the health sector which she said is crippling the sector.
Palmer urged government to consider upping the health sector financing and explained that the low funding development only affects the poor who have no financial muscle for health service access from other private facilities.
But Kalirani was speaking in Mwanza when government on behalf of communities received a health sector support from the Japanese government said if donors have seen the gap they should come in to help government with resources than speaking for nothing.
“When donors just shout at the government or criticizing government it will not help us, but what Japan has done, they identified the problem and came to support us and the people are happy, so instead of just criticizing government they should come up with help.
“They should come up with support, they can chose their hospital where they see the most problems it doesn’t matter how little of big, it will be appreciated by the Malawi government and the people of Malawi. But just standing on the hill criticizing government will not take us anywhere”, said Kalirani.
Kalirani said currently government is not having enough resources to do everything to suffice peoples demands in the health sector due to the zero aid budget being implemented.
“As government we are doing our best to manage service provision in hospitals but we still face resource constraints, so we need friends in times like these of need”, said Kalirani.
Government currently is heavily relying on domestic resources which remain inadequate more so with Malawi Revenue Authority MRA, the tax collecting body missing targets in revenue collection in recent months.
World Bank noted that Malawi established the Central Medical Stores Trust [CMST] as a trust to manage all the supply chain activities for health sector commodities with a view to integrating existing parallel supply chain systems for the various programmes in the country.
However, the bank stated that there has been “limited progress recorded so far in integrating the parallel supply chain systems.”
The bank also said it felt recapitalisation of CMST is imperative as accountability and transparency were identified as major items for the trust to be restored in the national health supply chain system.
CMST is a public trust that sources medical supplies for public hospitals nationwide. Initially, CMST was operating as Central Medical Stores, a fully fledged government department, before it was restructured and turned into a trust in 2010 to enhance efficiency.