Hiyala suffers health crisis as drug shortage enters 3rd month

An official says Hiyala Payam in Torit County is facing a health crisis amid shortage of drugs.

Hiyala Primary Health Care Center is the only facility in the area, with seven bomas dependent on it.

But Ben Albino, health officer in charge, says the center ran out of medical supplies three months ago.

These include medicines and drugs for malaria, cough, Hepatitis AB, and typhoid – diseases which are said to be common there.

“Sometime we refer patients to Torit Town main hospital due to the lack of medicines in the facility,” Albino told Singaita FM on Wednesday.

The Eastern Equatoria State ministry of health was not immediately available for comment.

South Sudan struggles with some of the worst health indicators in the world. After decades of conflict, the vast majority of South Sudan’s population lacks access to essential health services, safe water, and sanitation, according to USAID.

Malaria is a major cause of sickness and death in South Sudan, especially among children and pregnant women.

Observers blame this on poor policies as government funding for health is low, at less than 2% of the national budget, and out-of-pocket spending accounts for about 54% of total health expenditure, putting many South Sudanese people at risk of catastrophic health costs.