Nkhoma Hospital engages traditional healers on NCD awareness

Nkhoma Mission Hospital has, for the past two weeks, been training stakeholders from within its catchment area in prevention and management of non-communicable diseases.

The first series of the training was conducted by Nkhoma Non-Communicable Diseases Project in conjunction with Nkhoma Palliative Care with the support from Haraldsplass Hospital of Norway.

The training aims at equipping these stakeholders with right information surrounding the causes, treatment and management of diseases like diabetes, epilepsy, high blood pressure among ithers.

Speaking during a training one of the traditional healers, Jiya Sanudi, who is also village headman Mtitimila, said they have a crucial role in making sure that fellow traditional are not misleading people that they have the ability to cure some diseases like diabetes that require proper treatment and management.

“I can say now that this has been an eye opener since in the village people tend to mislead one another that they can cure some diseases and attribute their causes to witchcraft which according to me following this training are nit true and we should no our limits as traditional healers and refer patients to hospital who come to us for treatment,” said Sanudi.

Sanudi added that following the intense knowledge he acquired during the training he decided to quit smoking.

The traditional healers following proceedings of the training

“To be honest with you, I have been smoking for twenty-three years but the lesson that has been taught today on the dangers that smoking poses to one’s life, I swear I will never smoke again,” added Sanudi.

NCD project coordinator, Dr. Dickson Kulisewa is of the view that these trainings will promote knowledge and skills in the care of patients with non-communicable diseases, reported.

“It is vital for people know that once they are diagnosed with a non-communicable disease, they have to accept that such diseases are ongoing, they have to accept their conditions and follow proper management procedures, for instance if one is on medication, it is a life time thing despite the person’s condition improving,” said Dr. Kulisewa.

During the trainings introduction to palliative care was one of the topics addressed.

Clinical Associate in palliative care, Innocent Chikafalimani, reported that, pain control is a human right, therefore, patients who are not responding to the NCD treatment may be enrolled in palliative care.

Chikafalimani said “as trained personnel in patients care we should be inspired by the Gospel from Mathew 25:35-36 which says to feed the hungry, cloth the naked and visit the sick and comfort the dying in as much as you did it to the least of these my brethren, you did it to me.”

Leader of the Norwegian team, Aina Drengenes, hopes the trainings will be effective as participants were so active and pledged for continued financial support to ensure success of these trainings.

So far, medical personnel, traditional healers, volunteers from communities around Nkhoma hospital and nearby health centers have been trained in NCD respectively.

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