Harare hospital goes for months without water

HARARE - Harare Central Hospital, one of the largest referral medical institutions in Zimbabwe, has been operating without water for several months.

This alarming development was revealed during the mid-term health budget performance review workshop for members of the parliamentary portfolio committee on Health and Child Care last week.

The intensive care unit of the hospital was actually operating on a bucket system.

Resident doctors who spoke to the Daily News said the situation presented a health hazard to both patients and doctors.

Doctors also said they had gone for months without water in their residences.

The hospital has also been plagued by shortages of drugs.

The ministry of Health and Child Care blames inadequate funding for the problems.

Heather Machamire, a finance director in the ministry, said procurement of medicines had become a real challenge and feeding patients was now more difficult.

“Hospitals are struggling to collect revenue because of the economic challenges, as a result, they are finding it difficult to implement policies,” Machamire said.

The finance director also said the budget allocation per capita is $25,92 against World Health Organisation recommendations of $60.

Machamire said the ministry had only received 37,9 percent of the budget as at June 30, but 33,9 percent of the total figure had been dedicated to salaries while 30 percent was used for operations.

But Members of Parliament took turns to query why such a situation was allowed to prevail when chief executive officers in the sector were enjoying hefty remuneration packages.

MDC MP for Glen View Fani Munengami  said: “We have visited some institutions which do not (even) have mere gloves but a CEO has a Mercedes Benz which is rented from CMED for $6 000 a month.

“There is no running water at Harare hospital and they are using buckets to wash hands in the ICU. Why are you not prioritising such important issues?”

Ruth Labode, chairperson of the parliamentary portfolio committee on Health said the ministry was prioritising executives’ hefty remuneration packages at the expense of service delivery.

Davies Dhlakama, a director in the Health ministry, told delegates that they were in the process of rectifying the anomaly.

He said the ministry was in the process of constructing a water tank to service the hospital.

“We are looking into the issue of cars. They (CEOs) are entitled to cars but there is no money.

“If you look into the book, you will find that the money has not been paid to CMED,” Dhlakama said.

He said the public health institutions were in fact running on the donor-driven Health Transition Fund.

Comments (3)

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GALLERYCARTRIDGES - 13 August 2014

Typical ZANU PF gvt & one still cannot see what's wrong. Public health institutions were in fact running on donor-driven HEALTH TRANSITION FUND. But where do these donors come from??Are they not bringing sanctions in Zimbabwe?Idiots still believe this sanctions propaganda. Hanzi all is fine as long as we have a black gvt.

HANYANANI - 14 August 2014

please contact Heather Machamire at your convenience @FB @yahoo @Gmail @Google Find H.Machamire

s - 3 March 2015

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