The Lilongwe District Health Office (DHO) has commended Alliance One Tobacco Malawi for constructing a 40 bedroom Postnatal Ward worth around K90 million at Area 25 Health Center, saying the structure will greatly improve delivery of postnatal and antenatal services at the public health facility.
Lilongwe District Council Director of Health and Social Services (DHSS) Wilson Ching’ani made the remarks last Thursday when Alliance One Tobacco was officially handing over the newly constructed building to management of the Capital City’s based public clinic.
According to Ching’ani, Area 25 Health Center is one of the public clinics in Lilongwe city which refers many antenatal and postnatal related cases to Bwaila and Kamuzu Central Hospital (KCH) due to inadequate space and capacity at its maternity section hence, construction of the structure will ease the burden of the two major hospitals.
“Let me commend Alliance One Tobacco for constructing this magnificent high risk maternity ward here as it will now allow this hospital to offer secondary health care services such as antenatal and postnatal services without necessarily sending such cases to KCH and Bwaila Hospital hence deflating the burden of the two major medical facilities,” said Ching’ani.
Ching’ani added that the newly constructed Ward will now enable the health facility to handle some complicated maternity cases thereby reducing the distance which pregnant women from locations such as Area 25, 49, 51 and Mgona used to travel just to seek similar services at Bwaila and KCH.
“We are calling this a high risk ward as it will carter both high risk antenatal and postnatal patients who are currently referred to Kamuzu Central Hospital, so once we start operating, then most pregnant women based from this side of the city will no longer be burdened to travel a long distance to KCH as they are currently doing,” explained Ching’ani.
In her remarks Alliance One Tobacco Malawi Corporate Affairs Manager Fran Malila said her company thought it wise to construct the 40 bedroom structure as one way of fulfilling its Corporate Social Responsibly (CSR) program in the country which mainly focuses at improving the living standards of people.
According to Malila, majority of her company’s employees together with their families seek medical services at Area 25 Health Center since most of them stay in locations that are near the public medical facility hence the need to assist it so that it can continue offering reliable medical services.
As a company we have managed to implement some few projects here, the main reason being that we are based in this community, so when they approached us for this kind of assistance, we thought it wise to do so considering also that most of our employees and the families live here and they get most of their medical services from this facility,” said Malila.
According to Malila, Alliance One Tobacco has been assisting the Kanengo based health facility since 2015 where among others it also managed to construct a guardian shelter, drilled a borehole as well as refurbished a labour ward which in total cost the company about K125 million.
She however urged management of the health center to take good care of the structure so that it can achieve its intended goal of improving service delivery for both antenatal and postnatal patients.
Apart from the health sector, Alliance One Tobacco’s CSR programs also focuses on community based sustainability initiatives such as environmental conservation management, social-welfare, water and sanitation and education among others.