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Rotarians to the rescue at ailing hospitals
Pamenus Tuso, The Zimbabwean
December 04, 2013

The Rotary Club of Tsawwasen in Canada, in conjunction with the local Rotary clubs, has acquired $350,000 of medical items to help improve primary healthcare in the country.

The consignment, made up of medicines and equipment, was sourced under the Path to Health project. Country coordinator for the project Rodney Beadon spoke to The Zimbabwean at a handover ceremony at Mpilo hospital.

“As dedicated teams of Rotarians from Canada and Zimbabwe, we have sourced medical goods worth $350,000, and these will be distributed equally throughout the country’s provinces. The goods include items such as stationery, hospital furniture, wheelchairs, gurneys, drip stands, operating tables and delivery ward equipment,” said Beadon.

He said that Path to Health worked closely with local Rotary clubs and hospital staff to identify institutions in dire need of help.

“Care is taken not to duplicate equipment. Through our extensive Rotary network throughout the country, we engage with hospitals or clinics in need. We carry out surveys and come up with a list of needs. We then have the formidable task of sourcing the equipment and funding,” said Beadon.

Some of the hospitals set to benefit from the programme are Mvuma, Gwanda, Mt Selinda and Marondera hospitals.

Zimbabwe’s public health sector has been bedeviled by numerous problems and now has a maternity mortality rate of 790 per 100,000 live births, compared to 390 in the late 1990s. Eight women die every day while giving birth.

In addition, 100 children between birth and five years old die every day, mainly due to preventable diseases.

Only a decade ago, Zimbabwe’s public health system was ranked among the best in sub-Saharan Africa. But, just like the rest of the country’s economic and social fabric, the health system has taken a frightening plunge.

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