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Mpilo cancer, kidney patients stranded

by Staff reporter
13 Jun 2024 at 01:59hrs | Views
Cancer and kidney patients in the Matabeleland region are facing dire circumstances due to malfunctioning critical treatment machines at Mpilo Central Hospital in Bulawayo, as revealed by an investigation by Southern Eye. The hospital's poor state of healthcare leaves patients who cannot afford private hospitals stranded and at risk of worsening conditions or even death.

According to a nurse at Mpilo Hospital who spoke anonymously, cancer patients often have to sleep on the floor due to bed shortages. Moreover, patients with kidney failure are frequently neglected, unable to access essential dialysis kits promptly, and sometimes pass away during the night as a result. The hospital also lacks basic supplies like X-Ray films, with results shown directly on machines to patients who are often bedridden.

Dr. Narcissus Dzvanga, Mpilo's chief medical officer, was unreachable for comment amid these revelations.

The government recently announced signing a three-year contract with an American company to repair and maintain cancer machines nationwide, prompted by the malfunctioning of Mpilo's cancer machines since 2021. Zimbabwe's cancer patients have long been struggling with treatment due to severe shortages of radiotherapy and chemotherapy equipment, essential for treating about half of all cancer cases.

Experts highlight that early diagnosis can effectively treat some cancers, like cervical cancer, which is preventable. However, Zimbabwe faces one of the highest rates of kidney problems in Africa, necessitating dialysis for renal failure patients, a treatment costing between US$80 and US$220 per session at private facilities.

Due to limited medical resources and specialized treatment options in Zimbabwe, some patients are compelled to seek treatment abroad, exacerbating the healthcare crisis in the region.

Source - newsday
More on: #Mpilo, #Cancer, #Kidney