WHO donates E650 000 worth of NCDs equipment to government

Dr Simon Zwane handing over the equipment to one of the matrons Dr Simon Zwane handing over the equipment to one of the matrons

16 March,  Mbabane, Swaziland - AS the country battles with an increasing burden of Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs), the World Health Organization has donated E650 000 worth of equipment and consumables for the diagnosis and treatment of NCDs. The donated items include thermometers, stethoscopes, blood pressure monitors, weighing scales, peak flow meters, nebulizers, spacers for inhalers, Cardio Chek machines, pulse oximeters, defibrillators, blood analysing machines and test strips for urine protein, and troponin as well as guidelines for diagnosis and treatment of common NCDs at primary health care level. The items were presented by the WHO Representative Dr Tigest Ketsela Mengestu to the Principal Secretary for the Ministry of Health Dr Simon Zwane during a hand-over ceremony at the Ministry’s offices on 7 March 2017.

In her remarks, Dr Mengestu stated that the items are in support of the country’s efforts in the prevention and control of NCDs at the primary care level. Such diseases  include, cardiovascular diseases, chronic obstructive airways diseases including asthma, and diabetes mellitus. Dr Mengestu noted that these diseases are indeed a major cause of morbidity, mortality and disability in the country and the world over.

“Reflecting on the findings of the STEPs survey of 2014, indeed a number of Swazis are exposed to the risk factors for these diseases which include tobacco use, harmful use of alcohol, unhealthy diets and physical inactivity. Certainly the burden of NCDs is growing,” she said. Adding, the country representative said: “I sincerely hope that the medical equipment will be maintained properly and utilised effectively over a long period of time as a symbol of friendly relationship between the government of Swaziland and the World Health Organization.”

Receiving the donation, Dr Zwane explained that the equipment will benefit 10 high volume clinics in different regions of the country.

“You will recall ladies and gentlemen that in 2011 the Ministry defined an Essential Health Care Package (EHCP) which basically defines what services our clients should receive in the different levels of care and because of its dynamic nature, this had to be revised in 2016. During its revision we realized that the EHCP should embrace the principle of decentralisation as much as possible, particularly for NCDs,” he said. In addition the Principal Secretary  said: “It is becoming apparent that there is a lot of benefit that awaits our clients in the decentralisation of NCDs care and treatment. This is one significant intervention that the ministry needs to implement as a matter of urgency. It is encouraging therefore, to note that the donation we are receiving today will propel our efforts to the desired EHCP goal. We remain grateful to WHO for such support and herein pledge our utmost commitment to ensuring that the Swazi Nation is a healthy nation in line with vision 2022.”


For more information contact :

Dr Kevin Makadzange– HPR officer ; World Health Organization—Swaziland Country Office, P.O. Box 903, 2nd Floor, Lilunga House, Somhlolo Road, Mbabane, Swaziland. Phone :  (+268) 24042928, 24049635,  fax : (+268) 2404 4566 email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it


1 - Dr Simon Zwane handing over the equipment to one of the matrons

2 - WHO Representative Dr Tigest Ketsela Mengestu presenting the equipment to  Principal Secretary for the Ministry of Health Dr Simon Zwane.

3 - Some of the donated items

4 - Matrons from Manzini, Hhohho and Lubombo regions listening to speeches during the handover ceremony