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Mberengwa has an acute shortage of medical staff

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Mberengwa has an acute shortage of medical staff

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SYDNEY MUBAIWA
MIDLANDS BUREAU

MBERENGWA – A critical shortage of health workers is affecting health care services in Mberengwa with over 35 open vacancies that have gone for months without being filled, district lead master planner Average Chigwenya has said.
He said the high medical staff turnover is attributed to poor working environments and impassable roads. He said some staffers can only leave their stations once every quarter due to impassable roads and risk being robbed along the way.
“Mberengwa district is suffering from high staff turnover where there are more than 35 open vacancies that have been difficult to fill. These include doctors, mid-wives and general nurses. There is need to add two more doctors to make them four. There are no visiting doctors in all rural clinics. There is need for doctors to visit a clinic once or twice a month to offer general services. “Most of the hospitals in Mberengwa do not have functional theatres. The district has four hospitals, one Government and three mission hospitals. However, of the four, only one (Masase) has a functional theatre while all others refer their critical operations to Bulawayo, Gweru, Masvingo and Gwanda where such services are found,” he said.
Chigwenya said the major challenge was that there are no ambulances that service rural clinics as most of the roads are impassible.
Roads in Mberengwa are impassable because of illegal gold and emerald mining. Most roads are now gullies and have open shafts making it impossible for vehicles to pass. The spread of waterborne and sexually transmitted diseases is also high due to the mining activities.
“All the hospitals in the district do not have specialist doctors hence all such services are referred to Bulawayo, Gweru and Masvingo which are the nearest referral hospitals. There is need to provide specialists such as neurologists, laboratory specialists, dentists, opticians and mid-wives to enhance better health care services,” he said.

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