Bringing the shine back at Scott Hospital

Bringing the shine back at Scott Hospital

MASERU – In a neat hospital room in Scott Hospital’s children’s ward, a future king was born in 1963.
Scott Hospital was one of the best then, a world class facility fit for a royal birth.
It was the country’s number one provider of maternity and paediatric services when the King cried out his first at the hospital.
Now the facility is now a pale shadow of its former self due to ageing infrastructure, staff shortages and lack of medical supplies.

That condition is about to change though, thanks to efforts by hospital authorities to spruce up the hospital so that it regains its status as the country’s best medical facility.
“Major funding is being sought from the government, the business community and international partners,” said hospital administrator Matela Thamae.
Renovations in the children’s ward should be done in time for the King’s birthday, whose commemoration will involve officially opening the renovated children’s ward.
“We are mostly in need of 25 beds in the children’s ward,” he said, adding that they are not going to change the structure of the children’s ward “that much” to avoid tampering with the room in which King Letsie was born.

The room will be used as the intensive care unit, said Thamae.
It is only proper that thorough renovations are carried out at Scott Hospital. It represents an eye sore.
Visitors are met by a brown “welcome” billboard. About 40 meters from the billboard stands an old building that seems still intact.
Signs directing visitors to various sections of the hospital could do with a new coat of paint.

Several mothers wrap their babies in colourful light blankets known as tjale – worn by most Basotho mothers, outside the children’s ward while faint sounds of new-borns can be heard.
It is in this ward that major work is about to be undertaken.
The hospital’s management is worried the children’s ward will be worn-out beyond repair if it is not renovated now.
Luckily, with help from several local and foreign donors the paediatric section is currently being renovated.

Thamae said they are now desperate to complete renovating and enhancing the children’s ward ahead of the King’s birthday celebrations.
While the renovations are almost done, sourcing furniture is proving a financial headache.
Thamae said they are pleading with the donors to help to replace the worn out furniture.

An acute care facility owned by the Lesotho Evangelical Church in Southern Africa (LECSA), Scott Hospital is located in the western lowlands of Lesotho in the village of Morija, along the main road from the southern districts of the country to Maseru.
It serves the second most densely populated health service area in the country.

The hospital also takes responsibility for 14 health centres and five village health posts, providing both critical and minor health care services through an outpatient and inpatient service.
The outpatient service offers general consultations, pre and post natal clinics, family planning, X-rays and ultra-sounds, physiotherapy, counselling, laboratory services, and dental and eye clinics.
Scott Hospital was founded in 1937 with major funding from a missionary, William Scott.

With the aim of making Scott hospital the best again, King Letsie officially launched the Scott Hospital Improvement Project (SHIP) in 2013.
Through this fund, the hospital is renovating and enhancing the maternity ward, female and male wards, theatre and children’s ward with the aim of returning the institution to its former glory.
The hospital so far has received about M4 million worth of furniture from Turkey, which included incubators and beds in the labour ward.
Thamae said the entire hospital renovations should be completed within the next five years.

Thamae said people who wish to donate either furniture or funds can do so through the King Letsie III 50th Birthday Scott Hospital Trust, which was established to improve the hospital.

’Makhotso Rakotsoane

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