Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Fail to Plan , Plan to Fail (Part III) - Penampang District Hospital

The District of Penampang Needs A District Hospital Urgently

The District of Penampang needs a district hospital urgently. There is a district hospital each in Kudat (170 beds), Kota Marudu(170bed), Pitas, Papar, Keningau and also Tuaran etc etc ; in actual fact each district in the state of Sabah has a district hospital, so why Penampang has yet to have one its own district hospital.

This need is even more critical in view of the recent physical developments in Queen Elizabeth Hospital. If the authorities concern had the foresight and vision, the Penampang District Hospital should have been built 10 years ago, then the hospital in Penampang will be a place where part of deployment of services and wards from the recent building crisis in Queen Elizabeth Hospital can be situated without moving to other district hospitals that is geographically inconvenient to the general public or the rakyat.

Many claimed before Queen Elizabeth Hospital is in Penampang, however, Queen Elizabeth Hospital is primarily a tertiary hospital and is also a teaching hospital for the State of Sabah, so there is no question at all in terms of justifying another district hospital in Penampang.

It is quite disheartening because Penampang is one of the fastest growing districts towards municipality status in terms of modernization and urbanization in terms of development i.e. 3 cultural centres (KDCA, Monsopiod & Penampang Cultural Centre), a state of the art 10 Million dollar District Office and having the longest mall in Sabah called megalong yet Penampnag can only boast of one public health clinic and one more in the conception plus some rural health clinics.

With the recent rapid development of residential areas in Penampang all along Jalan Bundusan, Jalan Penampang and Jalan Papar lama, it is all more than justifiable to have a district hospital which offers basic outpatient and inpatient services (Medicine, Surgery, Obstetric and Gynecology), thus this will further reduce and ease the congestion in Queen Elizabeth Hospital.

I believe, the issue of a hospital in Penampang should not be politicized as many residents especially from the rural pockets of the Penampang area have yet to have access to basic health care, many of the villagers that I know of had to collect money from the neighbors in order to make a decent trip to Queen Elizabeth Hospital in order to seek medical attention. Why can’t we have a hospital in Penampang to reach out to their needs? If an airport terminal can be built within 18 months, I do not see why a district hospital cannot be built within 24 months. We urge the relevant authorities to look into this matter seriously. – for the sake of the people in Penampang and beyond.