Health defends cancelling tea and biscuits

13 March 2019 | Health

The health ministry estimates it will achieve savings of between N$50 million to N$60 million annually following a directive to stop serving tea, coffee and biscuits to patients at public clinics and hospitals as of April.

A directive issued last week by executive director of health Ben Nangombe informed all hospital and clinics to suspend the serving of tea, coffee, juice and biscuits between meals unless the items are crucial to the care of an individual patient.

“During these difficult times, we must identify areas where we can make savings so that resources can be targeted at more critical areas,” Nangombe told Namibian Sun yesterday.

While patients will continue to receive breakfast, lunch and dinner, unless needed for particular reasons, in-between snacks will no longer be served as of 1 April.

He said the decision was based on the “substantial wastage” of the tea, coffees, juices and biscuits served to patients between main meals, which amounted to a “significant cost to the ministry”. He said these items were found to be “rarely, or are not at all consumed by the patients” and have been found stored in bedside lockers which “in turn attracts all kinds of pests and undermines efforts to maintain a pest-free environment in our health facilities.”

The decision was thus taken, Nangombe explained, for the ministry's dieticians and nutritionists to review the menus and to determine “if the omission of the snacks and drinks would compromise the overall nutritional value of meals the ministry provides to patients.”

He said the feedback was that the removal of the three daily snacks would have no negative effect, as they “do not add any substantive value to patients' health and wellbeing, nor are they required in all cases in their treatment.”



Removing the snacks would “contribute to our efforts to realise greater efficiencies in the utilisation of limited resources,” Nangombe said.



He said the ministry estimated that it would save between N$50 and N$60 million per year.



Nangombe stressed that patients who rely on food for the purpose of taking their medicine or where more frequent meal intervals are needed to manage health conditions, will continue to receive meals as per their requirements.

He said the directive will be implemented at all public health facilities where state patients are admitted.

JANA-MARI SMITH

Similar News

 

Fresh water could turn hepatitis tide

3 hours ago | Health

Unless the lack of clean running water and toilets within informal settlements is tackled urgently, the 19-month tide of hepatitis E infections across the country...

Namibia okuli moshiponga shomikithi

3 hours ago | Health

Pethimbo oshilongo tashi kondjo nomukithi gwohepatitis E, ehangano lyuundjolowele muuyuni olya holola olopota kutya oopresenda 49 dhaakwashigana kadhi na uundjugo na ohadhi longitha owala iihwa...

Disease time bomb

1 day - 19 June 2019 | Health

As the country battles an ongoing hepatitis E epidemic, a global health report has shockingly revealed that 49% of Namibians are still defecating in the...

Hepatitis E cases surpass 5 000

1 week ago - 13 June 2019 | Health

More than 1 000 new hepatitis E cases have been detected in Namibia since January, while 45 people have died since the first case...

Cervical cancer kills 135 in //Karas in 2018

1 week ago - 10 June 2019 | Health

In 2018, cervical cancer accounted for 135 deaths of women mostly aged between 30 and 49 in Namibia, the governor of the //Karas Region, Lucia...

TB hospital nears completion

2 weeks ago - 06 June 2019 | Health

A long-awaited TB hospital at Keetmanshoop is expected to be completed by September this year, says the //Karas regional health director, Dr Refanus Kooper. ...

Diseases batter Namibians

2 weeks ago - 31 May 2019 | Health

More than 1.3 million people required interventions against non-communicable diseases in Namibia in 2017. Meanwhile, the probability of a 30-year-old dying from cardiovascular disease, cancer,...

Menstruation is normal - governor

2 weeks ago - 31 May 2019 | Health

One in ten menstruating girls in Namibia skip school every month or drop out completely because of a lack of sanitary products. This was said...

Namibia hailed as leader in HIV response

3 weeks ago - 28 May 2019 | Health

JANA-MARI SMITH Namibia is leading the race towards reaching epidemic control of HIV in Africa and the government’s robust commitment to...

Iipotha yoMalaria ya gu pevi

3 weeks ago - 24 May 2019 | Health

Iipotha yomukithi gwomalaria oya gu pevi noonkondo miitopolwa iyali yaKavango, sho kwa lopotwa owala iipotha yi li 1 120 okuyeleka nomvula ya zi ko ethimbo...

Latest News

Ndeitunga flaunts Kalahari successes

3 hours ago | Crime

Police chief Sebastian Ndeitunga has flaunted the successes of Operation Kalahari Desert, saying 871 suspects have been arrested including for murder, attempted murder, rape, serious...

Oncologist tusk case postponed

3 hours ago | Justice

The matter involving renowned Windhoek oncologist Dr Thomas John Brown van Wyk, who was arrested for the alleged illegal possession of three elephant tusks, has...

Killing dreams

3 hours ago | Opinion

The school sport fraternity has rightfully greeted the news that there will be no government financial assistance when it comes to international participation with a...

Congo general awarded N$12m settlement

3 hours ago | Justice

Congolese general Francois Olenga was awarded a settlement of US$850 000 (N$12 350 500 at yesterday's exchange rate) by the High Court of Namibia on...

Fresh water could turn hepatitis...

3 hours ago | Health

Unless the lack of clean running water and toilets within informal settlements is tackled urgently, the 19-month tide of hepatitis E infections across the country...

Namibia on its way to...

3 hours ago | Fishing

STAFF REPORTER The first public consultative meeting of the inter-ministerial blue economy committee will take place today. The meeting will be take place at the...

Union, MMI cement relationship

3 hours ago | Labour

MMI Holdings Limited (MMI) yesterday formally recognised the Namibian Bank Workers Union (NBWU) through the signing of a recognition agreement. MMI Holdings Namibia interim group...

Schools no place for political...

3 hours ago | Education

The education executive director Sanet Steenkamp has called on the public to refrain from using schools for gatherings, campaigns and fundraising activities for political gain.In...

Kalahari in LPM’s sights

3 hours ago | Police

The Landless Peoples Movement (LPM) has added its voice to the growing clamour for the government to withdraw members of the Namibian Defence Force (NDF)...

Load More