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Global Fund opens hospital for Swazi ex-miners

Swaziland has officially opened an Occupational Health Service Centre for ex-miners suffering from diseases such as Asbestosis, silicosis, HIV and Tuberculosis.The health centre situated in Nhlangano in the Shiselweni region was constructed through part of the $30 million funding by the Global Fund which targeted 10 southern African countries including Swaziland.

Representative for TB in the Mining Sector in Southern Africa Dr Julian Naidoo said it has been observed over the years that families of ex-miners have had difficulty trying to access compensation due to illiteracy and failure to provide the necessary information.

“This posed financial challenges for the relatives who could not even take their sick relatives to hospital when they needed medical attention for illnesses they contracted while working in the mines,” she said during the official opening on Wednesday.

The new health centre will also be used as a facility to collect data about ex-mine workers, which will provide a faster solution to the struggles of getting compensation for occupational hazards for local

Health Minister Sibongile Simelane said this is one move the ministry is carrying out to ensure access to health services for everyone, which is one of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG).

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