Tuesday, 14 August 2018
Meeting new board members: Ellos Ellard Lodzeni
We welcome Ellos Ellard Lodzeni, Patron and Founder Trustee of Patient and Community Welfare Foundation of Malawi, to our Governing Board starting from August 2018. Ellos answered a few questions about his work, what he brings to IAPO and why he is involved in patient advocacy work.
Why are you involved in the work that you do?
I am a Patient for Patient Champion having been a victim of a medical error. Having seen what some patients go through as a result of lack of awareness, I thought surely there must be something that I could. Additionally, Patient organizations in Malawi struggle with coordinating their efforts hence no harmonized voice to talk on issues. I am therefore involved in the work that I do to speak up for the patients who suffer as a result of the health challenges we face in Malawi. I do what I do to ensure we have social justice in health service delivery.
PAWEM exists to lobby and advocate for implementation of more humane passionate Patient centered health service delivery, provide a harmonized patient movement and also ensure that Malawi has a robust vibrant Patient movement that is informing health policy and practice in Malawi. It is a watchdog against any substandard health service delivery.
What are some of the challenges facing people within your area of work?
Some of the challenges we face include lack of awareness among patients , shortage of health workers –nurses and doctors, shortage of drugs and medical supplies with most times patients forced to pay out of their pocket yet they are very poor. There’s also a lack of harmonization among the patient movements in Malawi as well as a lack of operational resources for Patient organizations.
Why did you join IAPO?
As a voice of Patients, I want to learn best practices which I can use to inform Health practice and Policy in Malawi. At the same time, share our experiences and may be find ways of building strong Patient organizations. IAPO also provides an opportunity wish to Network with Patient organizations to widen my horizon in Patient / Health advocacy
What do you look forward to as you join the IAPO Board?
I look forward to advancing robust engagement between IAPO members as well as assisting in resource mobilization outside the traditional donors and sub-granting and sharing of such mobilized resources to member countries to build stronger patient movements. I also look forward to learning from other board members on how they are advancing patient-centered health care in their respective countries
What’s your vision for patient-centred healthcare over the next few years?
My vision is a system where health workers and patients must see each other as partners and equals without undermining each other. The health service must have all the required tools, medicines, drugs and supplies at the disposal of patients irrespective of status. Thus, all countries must have a comprehensive National Health Insurance Fund. Whenever there are drug stock-outs in Public hospitals vulnerable patients must be given prescriptions to obtain such drugs from Private hospitals and Pharmacies without expecting them to pay from their out of pocket resources. Motor vehicle accident victims must benefit from automatic third party insurance cover hence in case of hospitalization they must be referred or admitted to the best hospitals. Any Policy and legislative changes must be undertaken with full consultation of relevant Patient organizations and Associations. Lastly, the existence of a more coordinated strengthened, transparent, open and accountable health system at all levels.