Source: First Lady laments poor state of Byo hospitals – NewsDay Zimbabwe December 22, 2017
First Lady Auxillia Mnangagwa has lamented the poor state of infrastructure and service delivery at Mpilo Central Hospital and United Bulawayo Hospitals (UBH), saying the health institutions required urgent attention to bring them to international standards.
By NQOBANI NDLOVU AND SHARON SIBINDI
Mnangagwa made the remarks following her surprise visit to the two government hospitals on Wednesday, where she came face-to-face with the sorry state of affairs mirrored by the lack of drugs and other consumables.
The visit was her second to a government hospital after a surprise visit to Harare Central Hospital recently, earning her plaudits from a cross section of the society who view the visits as “refreshing”.
“From what I have seen at Mpilo Hospital, there are so many challenges. On cleanliness, one can easily tell they do not have detergents to clean the floors and walls. The state of the Mpilo Hospital needs to be looked into,” she said.
“Actually, both hospitals need refurbishment. The state of Mpilo Hospital is sad. It needs to be looked into quickly. The situation is also the same at UBH. It (UBH) needs to be rehabilitated. I would, like to commend UBH staff for the commitment they exhibited despite the many challenges they face,” the First Lady told journalists at the end of the tour.
The First Lady was, however, not amused by the ill-treatment of patients by nursing staff at the institutions.
“I was, however, particularly disappointed with the way nursing staff relate with patients. I encourage them to be friendly and welcoming. The patient-nurse relationship must always be friendly and not intimidatory,” she said.
UBH and Mpilo hospitals’ collapse mirrors the state of other referral hospitals across the country.
The decade-long economic crisis has left the country’s health institutions on the brink of collapse and analysts blame under-funding and neglect for the dire situation.
Most government hospitals lack medicine, drugs and equipment, while health professionals were overworked and poorly remunerated.
There was also a critical shortage of nurses, doctors and other medical personnel owing to the government job freeze.
Mnangagwa also visited Thembiso Children’s Home where she spent the better part of the day with inmates from different orphanages, before donating groceries.
She said she was targeting to visit and donate goodies at other orphanages throughout the country as part of her philanthropic work.