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Bulawayo gets new free hospital for children

by Staff reporter
23 Apr 2021 at 07:23hrs | Views
WHEN Sean was involved in a car accident on his way home from writing final Grade Seven Examinations sometime in December last year, all hope was lost as doctors confirmed he may never walk without crutches again.

The 13-year-old boy suffered a serious fracture on his left leg and after a series of check ups at the United Bulawayo Hospitals (UBH), his family was convinced he was paralysed.

Four months down the line, the boy from Bellevue suburb was on Wednesday one of the first surgery patients at the state-of-the-art paediatric orthopaedic hospital in Bulawayo's Hillside suburb, next to UBH.

Sitting on 10 acres of land, Cure Children's HospitalZimbabwe's first free orthopaedic hospital opened its doors in January this year and was fully licensed to operate in February. Orthopaedics is a branch of medicine that focuses on the care of the musculoskeletal system.

This system is made up of muscles and bones as well as joints, ligaments and tendons.

In 2020, Cure International — a Christian non-governmental organisation joined the Zimbabwe Orthopaedic Trust to form the Cure Children's Hospital of Zimbabwe which specialises in the treatment and care of children with physical disabilities.

 The $5 million dollar hospital was built and refurbished by the trust in partnership with the Zimbabwean Government and comprises of four buildings, housing 45 beds.

Part of its role is to treat free of charge persons aged 18 and below with conditions like neglected club-foot, bowed legs, cleft lips, untreated burns and other treatable disabilities. Statistics show that more than 370 000 children are living with treatable conditions such as neglected club-foot, bowed legs and knock knees in Zimbabwe.

The country also has approximately 1,6 physicians and 7,2 nurses for every 10 000 people which leaves specialist healthcare services out of reach for many children. It is estimated that about 53 percent of people living with disabilities in Zimbabwe became disabled before the age of 20 years.

A news crew caught up with Sean's mother yesterday who described her son's surgery as a miracle from above. She said she was hesitant to inquire about total cost of having doctors help her son recover as she knew she would not afford to pay.

"My son was involved in an accident on his way from school last year and he was forced to be on crutches as he sustained serious injuries on his left leg. We continued taking him to the hospital for check-ups and sometime in February one of the lead surgeons here Dr Collin Msasanure told us about this hospital," said Ms Beverly Kadzambi.

"I was humbled when they called asking if I could bring my son for an operation which I knew I would not afford. I was so relieved when they said they only wanted my prayers and nothing more which has brought so much happiness in my family," she said.

Ms Kadzambi said her son was recovering well and she was happy that he would be able to walk properly once again without crutches.

"I am very grateful for these God-sent doctors who treated my son and gave us courage despite the challenges. We praise God and hope many others will be helped because this hospital has the most dedicated and supportive staff."

The successful surgery was conducted on Wednesday morning after another one involving an eight-year-old boy from Emganwini suburb whose hand got injured last month. The boy's grandmother Ms Lucy Sibanda said the boy had hit against a metal object which led to swelling and dislocation.

"We sought medical attention and ended up at UBH where we were promised that he would undergo surgery. I feel like this is a dream come true for my family and my grandson is already showing signs of complete recovery," said Ms Sibanda.

"We are grateful to the staff at CURE Hospital because we could not have afforded the services they have rendered to us. May God bless their warm hearts and continue providing for the hospital so that they help more children," she added.

CURE communications director Ms Debbie Stowell said the hospital already had a waiting list of about 400 people.

She said the hospital had the capacity to carry more beds and called on those who would like to donate to contact the organisation through its website.

"This facility is the eighth hospital in the CURE network and the seventh in Africa. Medical care at the CURE Children's Hospital of Zimbabwe will be provided to all children regardless of their economic status, ethnicity, gender, or religion and we are still screening to see who is next as we just got started," said Ms Stowell.

"We have about 50 staff members at the moment dedicated to serve the people of Zimbabwe and we are also passionate about offering holistic care. Our patients have access to a pastor and counselling services during their time with us as we know that physical healing is directly linked to emotional and spiritual healing," she said.

Source - chronicle