Phaahla urges youth to prioritise their health

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Health Minister Doctor Joe Phaahla is urging the youth of South Africa to utilise health facilities that are provided to them by government. Phaahla was speaking in Pietermaritzburg in the KwaZulu-Natal midlands where he welcomed 13 mobile clinics donated by the German government.

The aim is to help to fight diseases in all sectors of the society in the province. The mobile clinics are fully equipped with modern technology to treat patients on the spot.

The donations were made through the Department of Health’s programme Ke-Ready which is aimed at encouraging young people to adopt a healthy lifestyle.  Doctor Busisiwe Kabane, who is part of the programme, spoke about the strides they have made through this programme.

“The difference that we see in the community is that people are coming forward for our services as young people are scared to go to the clinics for sexual diseases, but with Ke Ready, they are free, and they can. The doctors are young and non-judgmental and we have seen that increase in our services.”

Residents have lauded the programme.

“It will really help us as older people because we cannot walk long distances to clinics or hospitals. If services are closer to us, that is great,” says Busisiwe Khanyile.

Another resident Nomasonto Shabalala says; “I cannot walk a long distance and I cannot go to the local clinics but now I expect my life to change as soon as possible.”

Phaahla urged the youth of South Africa to utilize health facilities that are provided to them by government.

“The future is for the young people, so having gone this far in terms of defeating COVID, there are still other problems which need young people to take ownership of their own future health wise in terms of sexual and productive health, prevention of HIV and early detection. Even when we talk about various forms of cancer, generally it affects older people and above but there are also cancers which affect young people. So, we want to encourage young people but as these facilities are now available, they give us an impetus to go forward and further invest in community outreach programmes.”

German ambassador to South Africa Andreas Peschke says the partnership between these two countries has produced positive results.

“I think it’s a very important programme as it will provide health programmes to the community and it’s a privilege that we can cooperate as the government of Germany with government of SA on this project.”

Meanwhile, MEC for Health in KwaZulu-Natal Nomagugu Simelane has called on the community to protect facilities provided to them by the government.