COMMENT: Private sector, churches and others must partner Government in building hospitals and clinics Mr Victor Moyo

DEMAND for quality healthcare services is high in the country.

The Government is working hard to provide them, at the same time building new hospitals and clinics. Dozens of such facilities are among the more than 5 000 infrastructure development projects that the Second Republic has implemented since 2018.

While the commitment is there, resources are not always available.

As a result, authorities encourage the private sector, development agencies, churches and other interested partners to play a part through building and operating hospitals and clinics.

A Bulawayo entrepreneur, Mr Victor Moyo heeded that call and took action. Apart from building and operating four schools in the city, he is also building a 60-bed hospital in Parklands suburb which, as we reported yesterday, is nearing completion.

Mr Moyo said while servicing the education sector, he also observed that workers in the sector had challenges in terms of accessing healthcare and this inspired him to construct the health facility.

“We are a group of schools and so far, we have four schools.  We have a serious challenge when it comes to accessing health services hence this hospital project,” he told us.

Bulawayo is in need of more healthcare centres to complement the ones owned and operated by the Government and the local authority and the few others run by private investors.

Mr Moyo’s will be a welcome addition to that line-up.  We urge him to ramp up the work at the Parklands project so that the superstructure, its equipping and commissioning can be complete in the next few months.

It is our hope too that the facility will not be one for the elite.  Yes, Mr Moyo would want to recoup the huge investment he is pouring into the project but there is, on one hand, a huge difference between a legitimate quest for a decent return from an investment and elitism on the other.

Also important to note is that the project must provide specialist services, which Bulawayo, and the country at large are acutely short of.  As a result, many local people in need of specialist medical attention are flying to South Africa and India to access them.

This means a huge loss of foreign currency which can be spent on other pressing obligations locally such as importing medicines and equipment which the country cannot produce.  Furthermore, specialist medical treatment accessed abroad is always more expensive for the patient than that which is accessed locally.

That means externalisation of value as well.

Thus, building of the new hospital must be speedily completed; it must be properly equipped and staffed so it delivers the high quality and specialist services locally at fair charges.

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