A beacon of hope in Eastern Province
Official bed capacity
New patients at OPD
St Francis’ Mission Hospital was founded in 1948 as an Anglican hospital. It is situated in Katete District in Eastern Province, on the Great East Road, 500km east of the capital Lusaka and 125km from the Malawi border. Although founded by the Anglican Church, the Anglican and Catholic Churches have jointly managed St Francis’ Hospital, since 1986.
St Francis’ is a second level hospital and acts as a referral hospital for much of the Eastern Province (population 1,592 661), particularly for surgical, orthopedic, gynecological, obstetric and eye patients. It also acts as the 1st level hospital for Katete District (population of 270, 300), most of whom are subsistence farmers, each having their own fields, under common ownership held in trust by the chiefs and village headmen. The hospital not only provides curative services but also preventative services and gives support to the 28 Rural Health Centers in the District.
Some facts and figures
St Francis Mission Hospital is a second level hospital with an official bed capacity of 350, but with an actual capacity of about 386. On annual basis, about 100,000 new patients are seen at OPD, about 21,000 are admitted and about 5,100 operations are performed in theatre and close to 3,000- deliveries are carried out in Maternity.
St Francis is expected to cater for the western half of the province, receiving referrals from Petauke, Nyimba, Chadiza, and partially Mambwe districts, but in reality, patients from the eastern half of the province (Lundazi, Chama, Chipata, etc) also come to St. Francis in large numbers because it is a preferred hospital. This stems from its provision of good quality service delivery and corporate image built over decades in patients care. Unfortunately, this causes work overload to staff and exhaustion of supplies and financial resources; hence contributing to lowering of quality service. In fact, the hospital budget, in addition to its medical, paramedical and administrative staffing levels as well as the available facilities are not adequate to satisfy the required services of the large number of patients seeking treatment at the hospital.
Our major challenge
St. Francis largely depends on GRZ funds to run its operations, as other Non-Governmental partners are unwilling and apparently unable to provide operational funds. This is a major challenge indeed, since St Francis Hospital receives only 50% government support of, for instance, Chipata General Hospital, while dealing with double the workload.
Click here to view St Francis Hospital Workload 2013
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