The Resident Minister East, William Juana Smith has assured all of government’s commitment towards improving and sustaining the free health care service recently launched nationwide on the 27th April 2010.
While addressing the audience at the Government hospital in Kenema City, the Minister said President Dr Ernest Bai Koroma on the 5th of November announced the abolition of health user’s fees and the introduction of free health care service for pregnant women, lactating mothers and children under the age of five aimed at improving the health sector in the country.
He stated that government has strengthened the procurement and supply chain system to help put in place efficient warehousing, storage facility and distribution systems to ensure the stock of essential drugs in government hospitals across the country.
The Minister disclosed that lack of appropriate and qualified health workers in the country, insufficient supply of drugs, poor conditions of service, non availability of equipment and high charges levied for health service over the years militated against the delivery of good health service across the country.
He reiterated that the country has been ranked last in the Human Development Index due to its high infant mortality rate and he therefore pledged government’s commitment towards improving the health sector as demonstrated by the President through the introduction of the Free Health Care Service delivery in the county.
He said the free health care service implemented by the Ministry of Health and Sanitation and its developmental partners is a national issue which need the support of all.
He called on all Sierra Leoneans to help expose corrupt medical practitioners for the attainment of the President’s dream of providing quality service for the targeted beneficiaries.
The Minster also said the government has increased the salary of health workers and provided hospital equipments to help ensure quality health service delivery as a campaign against the high infant, maternal and mortality rate in the country.
He called on the press, human right organizations and the traditional rulers to be watch dogs in ensuring that the program succeeds.