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Lupane Hospital to offer doctors' training

by Staff reporter
26 Sep 2022 at 05:54hrs | Views
THE construction of Lupane Provincial Hospital is on course and upon completion, the hospital will offer training for medical doctors, offer specialist treatment, provide accommodation for employees such as its doctors and nurses.

Lupane Provincial Hospital construction is in line with the Second Republic's thrust of taking development to all corners of the country and provide far more services close to where people live and work.

As a doctors' training institution, Lupane Hospital will provide the service in partnership with Lupane State University.

Matabeleland North, whose administrative capital is in Lupane, presently does not have a State provincial hospital, leaving the Roman Catholic run St Luke's filling part of the gap.

However, St Luke's does not offer the much-needed specialist care services, leaving patients with the grim prospect of enduring trips of about 200km in search of expert care at Mpilo Central Hospital in Bulawayo.

Sources in the Ministry of Health and Child Care told The Herald that President Mnangagwa had directed that all efforts be deployed towards ensuring that the construction of Lupane Provincial Hospital be expedited so Matabeleland North and its people are not left behind.

To this end, the Government released $47 million last year towards completion of the hospital.

President Mnangagwa wants to see Zimbabwe attaining universal health coverage of sufficient quality in line with the World Health Organisation standards.

In an interview, Lupane district medical officer Dr George Mutizira said the hospital will change the face of Matabeleland North health delivery system.

"This country's health system is a bottom to top referral system depending on patient needs. For example, the clinic refers to the district hospital and the district hospital to the provincial hospital right up to central hospitals," said Dr Mutizira.

"The situation we have now is that we have a designated provincial hospital (St Luke's), which is not necessarily a provincial hospital in practice as it does not offer the services commensurate with a provincial hospital, hence the several referrals we send to Mpilo.

"In the end, what we have is that Mpilo's resources, both equipment and human, are stretched to the limit and the quality of its service is compromised."

Dr Mutizira said once Lupane Provincial Hospital has been completed, there would be a "definite" improvement in services offered at Mpilo, with a fair amount of the work now done in Lupane allowing Mpilo to concentrate more and more on the top end of specialist care.

Victoria Falls district medical officer, Dr Fungayi Mvura, said having an equipped and staffed referral facility close by would go a long way in improving patient management.

"You have to realise that when we refer a patient to a better equipped hospital, what we are saying is that the said patient is in bad shape, so you don't want to compound the patient's condition by subjecting them to a road trip all the way to Bulawayo from Victoria Falls," said Dr Mvura.

Meanwhile, Dr Mutizira said the envisaged medical school that would be opened would ensure that no medical condition would not be attended to at Lupane Hospital.

The granting of a doctor's teaching status, he said, meant the hospital will recruit medical experts in all health delivery facets, for the benefit of students and patients.

With Matabeleland North being host to the country's biggest tourist attraction, the Victoria Falls, Lupane Provincial Hospital will go a long way in giving impetus to Government's medical tourism strategy.

The provision of staff accommodation needs is in line with the Government's push to improve employees' conditions of service through non-monetary means.

Lupane in any case needs to have a lot more accommodation as it becomes in practice as well as theory a provincial capital and university town.

Source - The Herald