#Opinion: Muslims can Influence Malawi Health Sector


    Last week, Malawi Muslim Medical students joined several Muslim medical students across the globe at a medical camp held in Kampala, Uganda.

    Malawi students studying Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery and Bachelor of Nursing Sciences at Islamic University in Uganda-Habib Medical School represented the country at this auspicious occasion.

    The students were trained by world class health professionals and had a chance to interact with medical students from developed countries such as Turkey, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Nepal, Malaysia, Indonesia and Bangladesh.

    Muslim medical students from the ‘warm heart of Africa’ learnt how technology in other countries has helped to reshape the health sector. For instance, in Kingdom of Saudi Arabia it is history to manually collect the details of patients.

    They also understood the vitality of Muslims in developing countries such as Uganda and Tanzania in health sector.

    During the medical camp, the students were touring various places to appreciate the greatness of the “Pearl of Africa.”

    The medical students visited Botanical gardens, Lake Victoria and Uganda Wildlife Conservation Centre in old Uganda’s capital, Entebbe.

    The students also visited Saidina Abubakar Islamic Hospital in Wakiso district before touring Uganda Museum in Uganda’s capital, Kampala.

    Saidina Abubakar Islamic Hospital is where my story is focusing. The story starts here. This Islamic hospital belongs to Islamic Medical Assocation of Uganda (IMAU). IMAU is a grouping of all health professionals in Uganda. The association also has a medical students branch.

    This is one of a number of Muslim hospitals in Uganda. They also have Kibuli Muslim hospital. Kibuli Muslim hospital is a teaching hospital for Habib Medical School of Islamic University Uganda. Muslims in Uganda intensively contribute in essential sectors namely health and education among others.

    What about Malawi Muslims? We have all what is takes to have an influence in the health sector. Many Muslims are working in hospitals as Doctors, Nurses, Pharmacists and Lab Technicians but we don’t have our own hospitals to allow these experts work there.

    I doubt if we also have a well established Islamic Medical Assocation of Malawi despite having many Muslim brothers and sisters in wards and offices in referral hospitals such as Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital (QECH), Kamuzu Central Hospital (KCH) and Mzuzu Central Hospital (MCH)

    We also have many Muslim medical students at College of Medicine (COM) , Kamuzu College of Nursing (KCN) and Malawi College of Health Sciences (MCHS)

    Hussein Kosombe is a Malawian Bachelor Medicine and Bachelor Surgery student who attended the camp. Kosombe decried the minimal involvement of Malawi Muslims in the health sector.

    “It is sad that we don’t have even one Islamic hospital in 21st century. So sad because Malawi Muslims can do this. We have human resources and people can finance the construction of the hospital if proper steps can be taken. Financing the construction of a hospital is Swadaqatul Jaariya (good deeds that benefits one even after dying) ” Kosombe said.

    Malawi Muslims can collectively have in influence in Malawi health sector. We can start today. We are contributing to the health sector but we need to do more.

    This was the 18th Federation of Islamic Medical Associations (FIMA) medical students camp organised by FIMA in collaboration with IMAU under the theme ” Muslim Health Professionals in the Globalization Era.”