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Filabusi Hospital's state of disrepair irks minister

by Staff reporter
25 Sep 2021 at 06:04hrs | Views
HEALTH and Child Care Deputy Minister Dr John Mangwiro has said he got the shock of his life to find that there was no progress at Filabusi District Hospital after Treasury released $12 million in April for construction works.

Serving an estimated population of about 107  000 people, Filabusi has dilapidated wards and buildings.

During his initial visit to the hospital in April, Dr Mangwiro said he found termites all over the wards and lobbied Treasury to release funds for the district hospital.

In no time, the money was availed.

The release of the funds came at a time when Government is stepping up efforts to refurbish infrastructure in several health facilities in Matabeleland region to ensure improved health care services in line with the National Development Strategy 1 (NDS1).

Under NDS1, the building of world class infrastructure and provision of key social services has been identified as among key enablers for sustainable socio-economic development.

The accelerated upgrade of the public health system has seen older hospitals refurbished, new wards opened and new equipment bought.

In an interview, Dr Mangwiro said he made a follow up visit to Filabusi Hospital on Tuesday and was not happy with what he found.

"When I was in Filabusi last time I was disappointed by the hospital's state of disrepair as there were termites all over. I vowed that we repair it as a matter of urgency and improve its state as a ministry hence the follow up visit on Tuesday," Dr Mangwiro.

"At head office we had agreed that they would be given money to repair and $12 million was sent in April and I was expecting to find progress. Upon reaching there, I got the shock of my life and they told me they were still doing the tender system."

Dr Mangwiro said after some inquiries, he discovered that the tender system was being conducted in an appropriate manner.

"I then contacted the Army Commander in Bulawayo of the Southern region and discussed how he can help us revamp the hospital. As a ministry we are happy with how the army helped in renovating gutted buildings at Mpilo Central Hospital and he did indicate that he was ready to deploy skilled personnel to start working at Maphisa," said Dr Mangwiro.

He said the ministry was making follow ups on every project meant to improve health care service delivery at all public health institutions.

Dr Mangwiro warned officials against delaying the use of disbursed funds as it affects the quality of service that Government wishes to render its people.

"We expect work to start next week as personnel from the army have been engaged to help refurbish and help in constructing an isolation centre. We warn hospital authorities against delaying spending Government funds like in Maphisa where they held on to funds for four months," he said.

"Let us use the money that is being released by the Ministry of Finance and we need to act quickly and make sure we do things up to standard. We want to encourage hospitals to go to manufacturers as they are cheaper and they will guarantee the service. The Maphisa Hospital money is losing value and the reason for not using it is difficult to understand," added Dr Mangwiro.

Meanwhile, Dr Mangwiro said the renovation of three staff residences at Mpilo Central Hospital were going well adding that they will finish within estimated time.

"My visit to Mpilo was quite pleasing, remember there are three flats that were gutted by fire. When I first visited the place for the first time, I was not happy. It was very dirty with sewerage flowing," said Dr Mangwiro.

"Fast forward we engaged our armed forces, and finance gave us $150 million for the reconstruction of Mpilo gutted residences. So far, the roofing, plumbing and electricity for the three gutted blocks have been completed.

"We had projected that they would finish in three months and they would finish in time. We said they construct additional flats on six floors which will accommodate 16 doctors so most doctors will be accommodated."

Source - chronicle