The construction of Maseru District Hospital has made remarkable strides, nearing completion at an impressive 90 percent.
Dr. Retšelisitsoe Matlanyane, the Minister of Finance and Development Planning, outlined these substantial advancements recently during her mid-term budget speech for the financial year 2023/2024.
Various crucial aspects of the hospital’s development showcase significant progress.
Landscaping and road sub-base construction stand at 60 percent completion, while ongoing grass seeding enhances the facility’s surroundings, according to Matlanyane.
She said the installation of medical equipment has surged to approximately 75 percent, with furniture en route and set to arrive by January.
Anticipated to conclude by March 2024, the hospital is on track to commence operations in April 2024, she further disclosed.
This M800-million modern facility is destined to elevate healthcare services not only for Maseru residents but also for neighbouring districts.
It is designed to offer specialised care in eye health, cancer treatment, tuberculosis (TB), HIV, and non-communicable diseases, integrating telemedicine platforms.
Moreover, the hospital will feature training facilities and accommodations for aspiring doctors and nurses, equipped with state-of-the-art medical technology.
Financed through a generous grant from the People’s Republic of China, this initiative signifies a significant contribution to Lesotho’s healthcare infrastructure.
Dr. Moeketsi Majoro, the former prime minister, hailed the project as another testament to China’s ongoing assistance to Lesotho during the groundbreaking ceremony in 2021.
In her address, Matlanyane emphasised the government’s commitment to achieving universal health coverage and enhancing primary healthcare.
She said aver M882 million has been allocated to bolster this mission, including subsidies for non-financial institutions and essential health service procurement.
The ‘Hlasela Lefuba’ initiative, focusing on TB screening and treatment, she explained, has yielded positive results, catering to 286 patients in each district. New health posts established in strategic locations aim to fortify primary healthcare services.
Addressing long-pending concerns, Matlanyane underscored the importance of Village Health Workers (VHWs), affirming the government’s efforts to resolve compensation issues and align VHW policies with primary healthcare objectives.
“Mr Speaker, Village Health Workers are important in addressing healthcare challenges in underserved areas. Their presence helps to improve healthcare access, deliver preventive services, build community trust, and reduce health disparities, contributing to overall community health and well-being,” she said.
Following the presenation of the budget speech, Minister of Health Selibe Mochoboroane highlighted the ministry’s initiative to bolster primary healthcare through comprehensive road shows, delivering integrated health services across different districts.
Mochoboroane said the road shows, apart from serving the community, particularly aimed to reach TB patients who might have otherwise been missed.
He stressed the gravity of Lesotho’s TB burden, emphasising early disease detection and treatment as pivotal in reducing hospital referrals and alleviating the nation’s TB crisis.