Doctors’ absence prolongs patients’ suffering

ORDINARY citizens whose pockets are not deep enough to afford private medical care continue to bear the brunt of the ongoing stand-off between medical doctors — who have been on industrial action for over two months now — and government. People with various ailments are gambling with death as many have since stopped going to seek medical attention at public hospitals, where they are routinely turned away due to the unavailability of doctors. Hope in the public health system recuperating and going back on its feet has been lost and…

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Chaos as govt fires over 200 doctors

GOVERNMENT yesterday fired 211 doctors at public hospitals for going o strike to demand better pay, with another 500 at risk. Doctors have been on strike since September 3 demanding salaries that are indexed to the United States dollar to escape triple digit inflation that has ravaged wages. The Health Services Board fired the doctors after holding disciplinary hearings which the striking doctors did not attend and said it planned to hold another round of hearings for at least 516 out of the 1 601 doctors employed in the public…

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Zimbabwe runs out of contraceptives

BY VANESSA GONYE Public hospital doctors have lashed out at the Health Services Board (HSB) for firing 77 doctors since Tuesday. Addressing Zimbabwe Hospital Doctors’ Association (ZHDA) members and the media at Parirenyatwa Group of Hospitals yesterday, the association’s vice-president Masimba Ndoro said the move by government was costly, especially on citizens who have no healthcare givers. “This is an abnormal situation which requires solutions not to waste taxpayers’ money. It is a move we have anticipated; we knew they would take that route as we started our strike. It…

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Dialogue needed to break doctors, govt impasse

Doctors and their employer have been urged to engage in an honest dialogue aimed at ending the current impasse which has halted operations in public hospitals and created chaos in the private sector which is being swamped by patients. The Community Working Group on Health (CWGH), which is mediating between the Zimbabwe Hospital Doctors Association (ZHDA) and the Health Services Board (HSB), said there was need to resolve the matter urgently. “We are saying to the government let us open the dialogue doors by setting aside the disciplinary hearings and…

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Heads should roll at Parirenyatwa

Health watchdogs have called for thorough investigations into the recent death of a woman during labour at Parirenyatwa Hospital amid allegations that she was left unattended for too long. Sharon Munyonho’s body was found in a grisly state with the baby stuck between her legs. “There is need for thorough investigations. It is sad and painful that she died while giving birth unattended at Parirenyatwa Hospital, one of the country’s largest referral institutions, which is supposed to be the shining beacon of professionalism in the health sector,” said Itai Rusike,…

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Health sector mourns Mugabe

AS the country and the world continues to mourn the passing on of former president Robert Mugabe, players in the health sector have chosen to celebrate his life by sharing some of his successes and vision. Mugabe died on Friday at around 4am at Gleneagles Hospital in Singapore. He was 95. Mugabe was Zimbabwe’s first democratic leader after gaining independence from the colonial bondage of Britain in 1980 and he is credited with some of the policies which saw Zimbabwe scoring successes on many health fronts. Zimbabwe managed to eradicate…

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Scale up 2020 health budget, govt urged

GOVERNMENT has been urged to craft innovative and sustainable healthcare financing policies and protect the poor and vulnerable groups through implementing a comprehensive national health financial strategy. Community Working Group on Health (CWGH) executive director Itai Rusike said this in his 2020 CWGH national health strategy budget paper. Rusike noted that Zimbabwe’s health sector was grossly underfunded compared to neighbouring countries in the Sadc region to the extent that government in 2019 spent US$41 per capita (per person) on health, which is grossly inadequate. “Government spends a relatively small share…

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Victoria Falls Hospital has no ICU, drugs

HWANGE district’s biggest referral health institution, Victoria Falls Hospital, is running without emergency facilities and basic medication, a development which is compromising service delivery in the event of a disaster in the country’s prime tourist resort. Doctors at the institution said there was no functional intensive care unit (ICU) and related supplies such as oxygen synthesisers. A government medical officer, Michael Jeans, recently told United States ambassador to Zimbabwe, Brian Nichols that in cases of emergency, it takes about six hours for patients to be evacuated to the nearest health…

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Health funding still poor: CWGH

THE Community Working Group on Health (CWGH) yesterday said the supplementary budget for the health sector, which Finance minister Mthuli Ncube announced on Thursday last week is still inadequate in the face of rising disease and mortality levels in the country. BY VENERANDA LANGA CWGH executive director Itai Rusike told NewsDay in an interview that despite Ncube’s strong expressions, during the budget presentation, placed on social priorities including health, the supplementary budget for health only had a nominal increase which did not match priorities in the sector. Zimbabwe’s per capita…

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Govt to appoint NAC board

Government is expected to appoint a board of directors for the National Aids Council (NAC) within the next month, Health and Child Care Minister Dr Obadiah Moyo has said. The previous board was dissolved in March this year. Once a new one has been appointed, it will then appoint a substantive chief executive to replace the long serving Dr Tapuwa Magure who left in December last year. Responding to questions from stakeholders who felt the NAC board was taking long to be reconstituted, Dr Moyo said Government was following due…

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