For almost 50 years there has been a primary health care facility in the village of Lukuledi, about 20 km north of Masasi. The Salvatorian Sisters are responsible for the dispensary and the associated facilities such as a mother-child centre, a laboratory, a maternity ward and a kindergarten.
According to the law, there are no state subsidies for these health facilities and so the facility has to be self-sustaining and self-financing. Today, the entire area is under the auspices of the diocese of Tunduru-Masasi.
In the area of outpatient care, the dispensary admits an average of around 600 new patients per month. In addition, there are almost 700 who come for check-ups and treatments. Most of the patients come from the district of Masasi and the surrounding area and belong to the poor population. Many of them are hardly able to pay the costs for the examination, treatment and outpatient or inpatient medical care.
Mother and Child Center and Maternity
In addition to the various forms of examinations and treatments for mother and child, the clinic offers educational programs. The subjects in the process are prevention and health.
The biggest problem for the Health Center is a lack of medicines. Although there are months that are relatively quiet and where only about 10 patients come every day, during the rainy season and in the summer there is the risk of malaria and thus the number of patients increases dramatically.
Most people have a low income, so that they are hardly able to pay for the treatment or for the medication. Accordingly, the health centre itself has too little financial means to purchase the required medication. However, since patients in need cannot and do not want to be turned away, the health centre is constantly recording losses.
Even if the regional pharmacies and similar facilities sell all the medicines needed, these are often too expensive. In view of the low income, there is another problem, too, in paying salaries to the staff. Their wages are sometimes below the state minimum wage.
And also, increasing water shortage become a big problem, especially in the area of necessary hygiene.
Beneficiaries are all the people living nearby the Health Center and in the surrounding area.
For the support of the health care about 6.000 euros per year are needed.