By James Muonwa, Mashonaland West Correspondent
FRONTLINE health workers continue to bear the brunt of lack of personal protective equipment (PPEs) amid reports 64 health personnel have so far tested positive for Covid-19 at Chinhoyi provincial hospital.
The hospital is the province’s main referral health centre with a staff complement of over 600 health workers.
Although the number of Covid-19 positive cases seems relatively low at the institution, the hospital’s administration says it is worried by the high risk the health workers were taking in the midst of a ravaging pandemic, which has so far claimed over 1 100 lives in the country.
“I can confirm that 64 of our health workers, including nurses and doctors, have tested positive for Covid-19,” the hospital medical superintendent, Collet Mawire told NewZimbabwe.com.
He said all the affected workers were self-isolating at their homes while those that needed hospitalisation would be the first patients to be admitted into the recently-commissioned Covid-19 isolation centre.
The facility, which was officially opened Friday by Mashonaland West provincial minister Mary Mliswa-Chikoka, has a ward reserved for sick hospital staff where they would get treatment and the necessary palliative care.
Mawire added concerted efforts were being made to source PPEs to lessen chances of staff contracting the viral disease in future.
The medical superintendent also admitted there was a huge shortage of PPEs at the state-run hospital.
“We are at high risk because there is a massive shortage of PPEs, therefore, adequate PPEs should be made available for all frontline health workers because Covid-19 has not spared us as nurses and doctors,” Mawire said.