The Blantyre District Health Office (DHO) has suspended four health workers from Pensulo and Zingwangwa health centres due to negligence, Malawi Punch has established.
DHO suspended two clinicians and two pharmacy clerics due to negligence which led to a woman delivering at the gate of Zingwangwa health centre earlier this month, and the closure of Pensulo health centre last Thursday without proper reasons.
Blantyre District Health Officer Doctor Medson Matchaya confirmed the suspension, saying the four have been suspended following reports his office had received and that investigations on the reported matters are underway.
On 2nd April a woman delivered at the gates of Zingwangwa health centre and nurses on duty refused to assist her.
The incident sparked uproar on social media when Assan Gunde who took the woman to the health centre wrote about it on Facebook.
He wrote: “Kufika ku (arriving at) Zingwangwa clinic I parked right at the gate and in the process of kumuthandiza kutsika mzimayi (while helping the expectant lady)…boom! She gave birth to what I later learnt that is a bouncing boy.
“The two ladies we went with run inside to call for help from the doctors/nurse while me and my brother stood panja (outside) helpless and then a reply came that “a nurse akuti sathandizira anthu panja pa chipatala (they said they don’t help patients outside the hospital premise) so you have to find your own means”, I for one thought this was mere April 1 Fools day’s hangover and that maybe they were just trying to pull a prank but NO!,” Gunde wrote.
According to Gunde’s account, the two nurses on duty on the said night seriously refused to attend to the lady and baby lied helpless on the ground.
“All efforts fell on deaf ears until some old day (who had come with a pregnant woman as well) came to the rescue of the situation after we begged for assistance. She came and together with the two ladies they cut the umbilical cord and all that”.
Gunde added: “I have no kind words for these two nurses/doctors and only the Lord knows what I could have done if this was happening to my wife and my child. I used to believe that kugwira ntchito yachipatala (working as a medical practitioner) was a calling and that people loved it and cared for patients like they would care for their children/ relatives but I guess I was wrong. I know there are several doctors/nurses with hearts like angels out there and may the Good Lord bless you. What a bad experience that was!”
The Facebook post attracted furious comments from sympathizers who blamed medical council and nurses and midwifery association of failing to punish their members who neglect patients i course of duty.