Ministry of Health – DPS Clinical Service Mr John Botsang at the launch of the Air Botswana partnership

Ministry of Health DPS Clinical Service Mr John Botsang spoke at the launch 22nd September 2015

I take this opportunity to thank his Honour, the Ambassador of the United States of America for gracing this ceremony. We have been and still are receiving funding directly as the Ministry of Health to improve the health of the nation.

I would like to thank Air Botswana to have found it fit to sign yet another Memorandum of Understanding where Ministry of Health is a beneficiary.  We thank you for the tickets that you have offered to the doctors and other health professionals to provide outreach services.  This will augment what ALF has been doing.  We appreciate that service Sir.

I thank Airborne Lifeline for the provision of medical air services since 2007, we thank you for your commitment of providing such a crucial service, shortening the travel days to a day journey and this has made it possible for the already stretched health professionals to go back to their stations in the very shortest time possible.  Through your partnership we have been able to go to hard to reach areas like Tsabong, Hukuntsi, Ghanzi, Seronga as well as places like Francistown and Selebi Phikwe.  In the past we even went to Shakawe and Kasane and we hope this service will be reinstated in the near future. Since October 2011 to-date, we have transported 1103 health professionals, treated 17,266 patients and flown 376 hours.  These figures are more than this as you can see that statistics from 2007 to September 2011 is missing.  With these health professionals visiting these areas, it is not only the provision of services, they also give us feedback on infrastructure defects which need attention and this has been made possible by a feedback system put in place by ALF.

I thank Cresta Hotels for offering discounted accommodation throughout the country to our health professionals and those from our other partners University of Botswana/UPenn Partnership and Baylor Centre of Excellence.  You service is most appreciated.   I thank Botswana-Baylor Children’s Clinical Centre of Excellence for releasing your paediatric teams to provide services in the health facilities in the selected areas to HIV-infected infants, children, adolescents and their families and mentoring health professionals in these areas. Prognosis in these patients has improved as reflected by the low mortality and lost to follow-up rates of 0.2% and 2.2% respectively. We thank the University of Botswana/UPenn Partnership for also releasing its medical teams to provide outreach services in these areas and provide continuous medical education as well providing mentorship to the health professionals out there. Last but not least, we thank the Botswana HIV Society, our emerging partner who is bringing on board a multi-disciplinary team to provide medical services around the country as well.  The MoH and BHIV Society.  We will elaborate on their services more when signing the MoU.   I want to thank you all for attending and witnessing this very important partnership between air Botswana and Airborne Lifeline.   PULA!

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