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Concerns are being raised about the unhygienic state of the Opuwo State Hospital.

Community members say the hospital has become a haven for stray cats and rats, to the point where they invade patients' rooms to prey on their food.

Concerned community member Tjitopi Tjiurua says uncollected garbage, besides causing a health hazard, attracts stray animals.

Tjiurua, who was at Opuwo State Hospital to receive medical care, says the attitude of health workers is an additional concern, claiming nurses' time is spent on their mobile phones rather than focusing on their work.

"The nurses do not pay attention to patients. They stay with their cellphones, even when busy treating patients, while cats roam all over the hospital, eating patients' food. That's our biggest concern."

Another resident of Opuwo, Upendura Ndiombe, requested that the Ministry of Health and Social Services (MoHSS) intervene and solve the matter of the stray cats immediately.

Ndiombe advises that the Opuwo healthcare authority learn from other health facilities in terms of improving hygiene.

"I'm worried about the many cats in the surroundings of the Opuwo State Hospital. I don't know the meaning of this. Are they allowed to be here? To help us recover, or what? If they are not safe to have around, we need them removed."

Other community members agree that nurses leave patients unattended for hours, simply wasting time on their cellphones.

Approached for comment on the community's concerns, executive director in the Ministry of Health and Social Services Ben Nangombe noted that stray cats are a national concern at health facilities.

Part of the problem, he says, is waste food uncollected from patients' wards.

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Author
Tjizumaue Undari