Forty-five thousand residents of Divjaka are not provided with radiography services since 2017. The state-of-the-art device was inaugurated by Prime Minister Rama in 2016; however, according to the Zone MP Ilda Dhori and as verified by Faktoje, such device has only operated for six months. As a swampy area, Divjaka has a large number of residents suffering from arthritis and they must travel to Lushnja to get such service. X-ray services was much more needed during Covid-19 pandemic, however the medical staff report to Faktoje about the high repairing costs of x-ray, whereas Ministry of Health avoided answering.
During a speech held in the Committee on Health, Labour and Social Affairs, DP’s MP of Fier District, Ms Ilda Dhori, gave rise to concerns about non-operation of radiography at Divjaka Polyclinic.
“It’s been nearly 4 years now since Divjaka Residents have to travel about 50 km to get a simple X-ray in Lushnje, while Divjaka has a New Health Care Centre equipped with such device.
I called attention to Ministry of Health for Divjaka residents to no longer roll over urban vehicles and vans craving for a service that we can provide with truly little commitment!
Hopping that Minister’s word to seriously consider the imminent solution of this issue will turn into real deeds for the benefits of patients”, gave rise to the concern the MP, Mrs. Ilda Dhori.
The Democratic MP’s post on Facebook
Furthermore, she added that approx. fifty thousand residents are receiving services at Divjaka Health Centre.
On 15 June, Faktoje travelled to Divjaka Polyclinic to see the situation up close.
During communications made with the medical staff and area’s residents receiving services, we got informed that radiography has not been working since 2017. According to them, it had been functioning for only 6 months while they got informed about the excessive cost of radiography repairing.
Divjaka Polyclinic, 15 June 2022
“It is a European-level device available at the centre since it’s inauguration in 2016. It has been operational for approximately 6 months and since 2017 and on it has been out of order due to an electronic package failure. Repairing the device has quite excessive cost. Interest teams have checked on this issue as we all want to make it operational. We think we will put it into operation soon”, announced medical staff members.
Out of order radiography at Divjaka Polyclinic
They point out that radiography is particularly important for thousands of area’s citizens receiving services at this Polyclinic. Doctors say that, as a swampy area, residents need such device a lot because the number of people suffering from arthritis is high.
“X-ray radiography is a routine examination, i.e., a fracture, a swelling. All emergent cases are sent via ambulances. Car accidents, breaks or slips that must be radiographed are sent to Lushnja hospital by ambulances. Some other little easier cases are treated within the hospital through referrals, as the area is quite swampy and affected by arthritis. This Health Centre serves to thirteen thousand residents. We are five doctors in this Health Centre”, explains the medical staff of Divjaka Polyclinic.
Out of order radiography at Divjaka Polyclinic
During the pandemic, Divjaka was craving for X-ray radiography. Doctors say that patients were sent to Lushnja hospital to be provided with such service
“It is an essential service to examine a cough, a fever or other Covid related issues. It is extremely necessary. People went to Lushnja hospital and waited for hours; this situation lasted for 2 years” – they further explain.
Necessity for X-ray radiography in this Health Care Centre is strongly emphasized by area’s residents. They told Faktoje that during Covid-19 pandemic, they were tortured while waiting in line at Lushnja hospital.
Divjaka Polyclinic, 15 June 2022
“We have been in an exceedingly difficult situation. At first, when Covid broke out, we could hardly find vans and cars to go to the hospital. Our relatives and neighbours feared giving us a lift as Covid was all over around. We wanted to be radiographed (X-rays), but the line was too long. “People fainted while waiting in line in Lushnje,” says a 50-year-old area’s resident.
An elderly man suffering from arthritis, and he occasionally must go to Lushnja hospital for x-rays, says: “The problem is as we waste time by hanging around there while we have our centre here. Van tickets prices are also increased; it is even hot. It is exceedingly difficult for us to go there. Sometimes, my son gives me a lift, but he works, and he cannot come always with me”.
After having closely identified the on-site situation and following the major concerns raised by residents and medical staff, Faktoje addressed a request for information to the Ministry of Health and Social Protection on 16 June.
We asked some questions about the equipment repairing costs and about the expected time when it will be ready for thousands of residents receiving service at Divjaka Polyclinic.
Request for information sent to Ministry of Health, 16 June 2022
Ministry of Health delegated the request to Divjaka Health Centre, which replied on 20 June. It emphasized that Divjaka Health Centre budget has no accredited monetary value for maintenance or repair of the radiography equipment, which covers the needs of 45,000 Divjaka residents.
“Given the fact of not being field experts, we therefore do not have an exact value or cost figure of the incurred failure. No other Health Care Centre in Divjaka Municipality is equipped with x-ray equipment, except for the polyclinic”, explains among others, Divjaka Health Centre.
Based on your request, pursuant to Law no. 119/2014, “On the Right to Information” received on 16/06/2022, be kindly informed as follows:
1. Is there a maintenance fund for the x-ray equipment? If yes, how much is it?
– Divjaka Health Centre budget has no accredited monetary value for maintenance or repair of the radiography equipment.
2. How much does repairing of this x-ray defected device cost?
– Given the fact of not being field experts, we therefore do not have an exact value or cost figure of the incurred failure.
3. When is this out of order x-ray radiography device expected to be repaired or replaced?
– We have no exact date when it will be repaired or replaced
4. How many residents does this type of equipment serve at Divjaka Polyclinic?
– It serves to all the residents of Divjaka Municipality amounting of about 45,000 residents.
5. Apart from the Divjaka Polyclinic, do other Health Care Centre of the area have such radiography device?
– No, not even a Health Care Centre in Divjaka Municipality has radiography equipment.
DIRECTOR OF THE HEALTH CARE CENTRE DIVJAKA
Response from Divjaka Health Centre
In April 2016, Prime Minister Edi Rama, along with the Minister of Health back then, Ilir Beqaj and MP Erion Braçe inspected Divjaka Polyclinic.
“This is probably the most difficult part of the full site of reforms and changes, Health… Drastic fee reduction in hospitals and more investments in infrastructure like this investment of European standards, very impressive and will provide a completely different service to the whole territory. In addition to that, it provides better conditions for the whole personnel as well”, said the Prime Minister back then.
According to Ministry of Health data, the investment cost for Divjaka Polyclinic was 75 million ALL.
“Divjaka Health Centre – an out-of-order infrastructure, not only for the thirty-four thousand Divjaka residents, but even for the holidaymakers during the touristic season. Divjaka has a modern polyclinic, a brand-new building according to the European infrastructure standards and modern equipment.
With an investment of 75 million ALL, it has become a multi-purpose centre, where in addition to the traditional services of the family doctor and the basic health check-up service, it has also been equipped with specialized services such as cardiology, ophthalmology, otolaryngology, paediatrics, imaging etc.” – it was stated in the official notification of the Ministry of Health dated 26 April 2016.