BY JOY OFASIA
KAONASUGHU Clinic, in Central Makira, lacks lighting and staff who can do basic tasks like testing for malaria.
The clinic, staffed by two nurses, serves around 3000 people living in eight villages from Waihara to Kokana and was only re-opened last year after being closed for a period because of a lack of ability to offer services.
Joanna Masura’a, one of the clinic’s health committee members, brought the situation at Kaonasughu to light during a visit to Vois Blo Mere Solomon Islands last week.
“The clinic needs to provide good quality health services to service the people. For example, there is a lab to do malaria tests but the clinic does not have the right person to do this particular job,” she said.
“Currently there is someone who is helping out to do the job and paid by the community, but it depends only when the community pays him before he does the malaria check,” she explained.
“Currently what is happening today is patients have to travel to Kirakira to have their blood tests. This is a bad because we have the right equipment but still we have to travel a far distance just to have a blood test for malaria.”
As a heath committee member, Joanna sees that the clinic needs many improvement.
“There is a need to access good lights and good sanitation” she said.
Patients who are serviced during night times only uses torches.
“When a woman comes to deliver her baby during the night the clinic only uses a torch to provide light for the patient. It also does not have proper access to water to use.”
Only two nurses served the large population. Doctors visited often but all referrals had to be transported to Kirakira.
“The number of people that access the services in a week is above 10 daily and it is always busy in the morning,” Joanna said.
“There are eight health committee members chosen from eight villages in the clinic catchment area, four women and four men who are trying their best to help the nurses to provide a good healthy setting for the people of these communities,” Joanna said.
“I see this as a very serious issue that needs to be addressed. We still have a very poor health service and that needs to be recognised. If only we had better lights, proper sanitation and a person to run lab tests, then we could provide a good service for the people of our community.”