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Residents wade into council nurses exodus

by Staff reporter
16 Mar 2021 at 06:30hrs | Views
BULAWAYO residents have called on the city council to address the mass exodus of nurses from the local authority's clinics before it cripples the health delivery system.

In a virtual discussion held on Monday last week, Bulawayo City Council (BCC) health services director Edwin Sibanda said council clinics had been hit by mass exodus of nurses.

The council runs 19 clinics in the city which are operating with half the required staff.

He said council clinics were operating with 87 out of the required 180 nurses.

The mass exodus has been caused by poor salaries and working conditions.

"It's something that is of worry to us as citizens of the city because definitely we will be seriously affected especially when you get to health institutions and find that there are no personnel that will assist you on time," Bulawayo United Residents Association chairperson Winos Dube said.

"We are quite aware that in the country there are so many people that have been trained in nursing and who have not been really engaged full-time to get into jobs.

"The council should extend its hand and invite such people to come forward," he said.

Dube said residents were aware that the situation was not only affecting the council but even government hospitals, as nurses are leaving in droves for greener pastures.

"So it's an area that really needs serious attention, not only by the local authorities, but even the government has to focus on that one and see to it that the welfare of these health personnel is seriously looked into so that they are retained.

"We need these people. What is the use of training nurses and then when they are qualified they no longer serve their nation, but serve outside?

"It becomes such a waste of resources because these are resources that are meant to benefit the nation," Dube said.

In January this year, BCC workers went on a five-day strike citing poor salaries.

The industrial action resulted in clinics being closed, with people failing to access primary healthcare.

Garbage also piled up in the city centre and residential areas.

Source - newsday