By Freedom Mupanedemo
Gweru Provincial Hospital has formally applied to the Ministry of Health and Child Care to be upgraded to a central hospital following major additions and improvements, including a fully-fledged renal unit, an intensive care unit and an increase in the number of specialists.
The provincial referral hospital has been working on upgrading its facilities to match those of a central hospital as part of the Second Republic’s efforts to revamp the country’s health system and allow the hospital, which already has nurses under training, to be used for the clinical education of doctors.
In an interview, Gweru Provincial Hospital Medical Superintendent Dr Fabian Mashingaidze said the 400-bed hospital was now ready for central hospital status.
“The hospital is now a multi-disciplinary training institution that offers registered general nursing, midwifery and environmental health technician training,” he said. “The hospital also serves as the referral centre for the eight districts in the Midlands Province.”
There were now 22 specialists available, which matches central hospital standards, for the more than 2 million people across the Midlands.
“Gweru Provincial Hospital is now made up of various departments that include the out-patient, X-ray, laboratory, rehabilitation, human resources, nursing and administration among others,” said Dr Mashingaidze.
“The demand for health services at the institution is not only from the population of the Midlands, but the entire country and the Sadc region.”
Dr Mashingaidze said the hospital now had a fully-fledged renal department, as well as other departments manned by specialist doctors.
“We have 22 specialists’ doctors covering obstetrics and gynaecology, general surgery, orthopaedics, mental health, anaesthetics, medicine among others,” he said.
Dr Mashingaidze said the central hospital status will help ease pressure on central hospitals in Bulawayo and Harare.
“The hospital also has an intensive care unit,” he said. “We have also partnered universities in training our doctors. We have also managed to retain specialists and being upgraded to a central hospital would ease the burden of patients being transferred to either Bulawayo or Harare.”