Health Ministry says 55% of Hospitals up and running in Tigray

ADDIS ABABA – The Ministry of Health announced on Wednesday at least 55 percent of hospitals and 52 percent of health centers in Tigray region have become operational.

The ministry has organised a task force in a bid to restore the health system in the region.

Currently, 55 percent of hospitals and 52 percent of health centers in the region are up and running as a result of the task force’s effort, said Health Minister Dr. Lia Tadesse during a press briefing.

More than 95 percent of health workers in these facilities are actively engaging in day-to-day activities, according to the Minister.

The ministry’s report last week indicates about 46 percent for both health centers and hospitals damaged during the conflict in the region have become functional.

“This means an increase of 10 more health facilities in one week.” Dr. Lia said.

The conflict in Tigray erupted in November, last year, after forces of the former ruling party of the region, TPLF, attacked the federal army base there – prompting the central government to carry out a rule law enforcement operation in the region.

The fighting caused major disruption of various social services and facilities including the health facilities.
Evaluations have been done to know the extent of damage in the medical centers and hospitals yet to start functioning, the minister said.

They will be repaired with a fund allocated by the federal government to maintain and restore services in 14 hospitals and 58 health centers, according to her.

So far, officials said a total of over 215 million Birr has been transferred by the ministry and its agencies to respond to recovery activities and continuity of various health programs in the region.

The recovery effort involves providing medical equipment for 40 health centers, said the minister, adding that two mobile x-rays, ultrasound and six mechanical ventilators were sent to Mekelle, Quiha, Shire and Abi Adi.

Additional 47 microscopes obtained from the Ethiopian Pharmaceuticals Supply Agency (EPSA) are being distributed in Mekelle.

So far, health officials say over 310 million Birr worth medicines and medical equipment have been delivered to different facilities by the EPSA.

Apart from efforts to restore health facilities, 65 mobile health and nutrition teams each consisting 6 to 8 health professionals have been formed and are delivering services to the communities with much focus given to mothers and children, Dr. Lia stated.

More than 490,000 people have received services through health facilities and mobile health teams in the past two months, according to the ministry.