Back to Index
Parirenyatwa condemns hospital
Chiketo, Daily News
November 03, 2013
The minister of Health
and Child Welfare, Dr David Parirenyatwa and the special advisor
to the President, Timothy Stamps have condemned Sakubva District
Hospital’s Psychiatric Unit following their tour of the place
in a belated World Mental Health Day last Friday.
Parirenyatwa was taken
on tour of the Psychiatric Unit as a prelude to the national World
Mental Health Day belated commemorations running under the theme
“Mental Health and Older Adults.”
Parirenyatwa said the
tour was meant “to show us that the province doesn’t
have a psychiatric hospital” adding that he and Stamps had
arrived at a quick decision to condemn it after the tour of the
agree) that this building is condemned… during the tour Dr
Stamps just shook his head and said there is nothing here,”
The psychiatric unit
is currently housed in a dilapidated building, with a dingy holding
cell that the minister referred to as a prison during the tour.
“This is a prison,”
Parirenyatwa said on entry into the cell.
The facility is on lease
from Mutare City Council and has only been working without patients
and referring any clients who needed admission to Harare Central
During an extended tour
of the maternity section of the hospital which was in apt order,
Stamps was still wondering what had hit him saying he was depressed
by what he had seen.
“There was a lot
of money that was provided for psychiatric care after the war,”
“This is a non-starter,”
Parirenyatwa said after the tour with Stamps adding that, “this
should be a museum of what the Rhodesians did to us.”
“We are going to
look again and relocate to where they will be recreational facilities,”
The Health minister called
for more resources from treasury towards his ministry.
sing the same tune that we need more money for the health sector,”
Sakubva District Health
Services administrator, Gracious Matongo and the hospital’s
Grade 3 Matron, Sheila Chimbetete took the minister’s decision
positively saying it would help get government attention.
“There are no partners
supporting mental health delivery system,” Matongo said.
Chimbetete also said
the psychiatric unit was also routinely being crippled by “essential
anti-psychotic drug shortages.”
During his key address,
the Health minister also acknowledged critical shortages of antipsychotic
and cancer medications an area he pledged to improve.
see how we can continue to neglect these two areas, psychiatric
and cancer drugs. We know they are expensive but its government’s
responsibility,” the minister said.
Parirenyatwa urged younger
generations to take greater care of their aging parents and not
to “dump” them in old people’s homes especially
when they have mental health problems.
“Haikona kuti ndafinhikana
saka ndakumuendesa kuold people’s home (Let us not say I’m
fed up so I’m taking them to an old people’s home).
Let’s look after our old parents especially if they have a
mental disorder… if they have a disorder try to get them treated
early,” the minister said.
Parirenyatwa said, “global
statistics indicate that about 20 percent of adults aged 55 years
and above suffer from a mental disorder.”
World Health Organisation
Disease Prevention and Control Officer, Lincoln Charimari in an
address he read on behalf of WHO Zimbabwe Representative David Okello
noted that “In the African Region, the population of elderly
people was estimated at 43 million in 2010 and it is projected to
reach 67 million by 2025 and 163 million by 2050.”
“Due to the significant
gain in life expectancy, a growing number of people are now elderly
and face an increased risk of chronic diseases including mental
health conditions and disabilities. Dementia, depression and anxiety
are some of the mental health problems that older adults face and
can often cause severe dependency,” Okello said.
Parirenyatwa also made
donations to Zororo Old People’s Home, four primary schools
and nine elderly persons present.
Please credit www.kubatana.net if you make use of material from this website.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License unless stated otherwise.