Fire has destroyed part of Balaka Hospital, leading to the evacuation of 146 patients admitted at the hospital.
The fire broke out in the early hours of today, starting from the kitchen and spreading to the data and records office of the 200 capacity health facility.
Balaka district director of health and social s’s kitchen services Eugene Katenga-Kaunda told the local media that the blaze has completely burned the hospital’s kitchen unit.
He added that patients at the hospital have been moved from the wards and the hospital has made arrangements to take them to other public hospitals.
“We have managed to evacuate all the 146 patients currently admitted to the hospital. Since we cannot prepare food for them we have liaised with neighboring districts of Ntcheu and Machinga to accommodate our patients,” said Katenga-Kaunda.
Former Balaka North Parliamentarian Lucius Banda said people at the hospital evacuated patients and put out the fire as firefighters had not arrived at the scene over an hour after being alerted.
“I am so happy that despite having no firefighters we did our best to evacuate all the 146 patients, beds and mattress and all other things we could manage. The other wonderful news is that we stopped the fire before it got to the drug stores. The kitchen, Laundry and data store are the ones damaged completely,” he said.