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Mpilo Hospital runs out of blood

by Staff reporter
14 Feb 2014 at 06:54hrs | Views
THE lives of patients requiring blood transfusion at Mpilo Central Hospital has been placed at great risk as the institution has no money to replenish its blood stocks that have dried up.

Mpilo Hospital clinical director Wedu Ndebele told Southern Eye on Monday that the shortage of blood was not unique to the institution, but affected all government health institutions.

Ndebele said the problem was caused by a decision by the National Blood Service of Zimbabwe (NBSZ) to suspend the account system of buying blood and demanding cash up front.

Ndebele could not be drawn into revealing the average blood requirement and how much it costs.

He, however, said the hospital's maternity ward was not affected.

"In the maternity ward there are no problems because we have a coupon system and the required blood stocks are available.

"The problem is that we do not have money to pay the blood bank; not that there is any blood shortage (in the country)."

Ndebele said the hospital had made some partial payments and was expecting blood stocks to be delivered soon.

NBSZ public affairs manager Esther Massundah referred all inquiries to the Health and Child Welfare ministry.

Acting Health and Child Care minister Douglas Mombeshora was not reachable for comment as both his mobile phones were unreachable.

The majority of government owned hospitals are mired in debt and have suffered from underfunding for some time.

Source - Southern Eye