- Councillors want a permanent solution of prevention
Assistant Minister of Health Lelatisitswe Sethomo has revealed that renal disease patients from across Ngamiland will from next week be spared from traveling to Francistown for dialysis services as government will through a private doctor provide those services at Letsholathebe II Memorial Hospital.
Lelatisitswe made the announcement when addressing the just ended North West District Council (NWDC) full council meeting this week.
Sethomo revealed that they have engaged a private citizen nephrologist who will be based at Letsholathebe II Memorial Hospital servicing patients from the Boteti area and the whole of Ngamiland. He indicated that they have also placed around six private Batswana nephrologists across hospitals in Botswana to ensure that dialysis services are brought closer to communities.
However, Sankoyo/Shorobe councilor, Olebile Chombo called on government to instead find permanent solution to prevent renal diseases lamenting that scores of residents especially in Shorobe have succumbed to kidney failure.
“Bringing the dialysis services here will not change anything, let us provide and alternative solution to what causes the disease and how we can address the cause,” Chombo pleaded.
Though Chombo was of the view that kidney diseases in Ngamiland are caused by borehole water consumption provided by Water Utilities Corporation (WUC), he has however urged government to confirm factors behind the prevalence of the diseases in the district.
“Engage WUC and ensure that the water is tested and safe to drink, there is need for prioritization of prevention than cure in order to save government funds and to avoid loss of lives,” Chombo emphasised.
WUC head of business centre – Maun, Thabo Ndadi has however during a recent press conference refuted that the rising kidneys diseases in Ngamiland are caused by quality of their water. He assured that WUC water is tested regularly according to national and international standards and they are satisfied with the results.
The councilor indicated that with a total population of 1027 Shorobe village has from January registered a total of 16 patients suffering from kidney disease. Chombo indicated that this does not only apply to Shorobe village as the situation still persists across Ngamiland.
Chombo has however acknowledged government’s efforts for bring services closer to the people as patients had to travel to Francistown for dialysis services after every three weeks, a move which he said was costly to the patients and their families.
Boro/Senonnori councilor, Keson Kgaga who also appreciated the government’s efforts to provide dialysis services in Maun said patients will now be able to be closer to their families for support. He noted that in his area he has a patient who was forced to relocate to Francistown to be able to receive dialysis services.
Meanwhile the assistant minister has revealed that the drug supply situation in the district has stabilised, to a 70% range. He indicated that his ministry has put in place a system which prioritises people in hard to reach areas on drug supply, explaining than they allocate drugs to those areas before reaching areas.
Health authorities have been implored to find a permanent solution to the prevalence renal diseases in the North West.