By Ndatenda Njanike
ATLEAST 12 bodies lie unclaimed at Marondera General Hospital and are now reaching an advanced state of decomposition due to malfunctioning of mortuary refrigerators.
The hospital has a carrying capacity of 27 bodies and only six refrigerators are fully functional while 21 are malfunctioning.
Authorities are now considering pauper’s burial for the unclaimed bodies.
The situation has been made worse by financial constraints to upgrade the mortuary so that it could accommodate a larger number of up to 36 bodies as well as attend to the malfunctioning refrigerators.
The hospital has since submitted a $15 million budget to government to improve the state of the mortuary, said the medical superintendent, Dr Celestino Dhege in an interview.
“The situation calls for urgent redress especially in this time of Covid-19 where bodies needed to be tested first before burial,” he said.
He added that the bodies could not be released before the results are out.
“We have submitted a budget proposal of $15 million to expand our mortuary so that it accommodates at least 36 bodies and we are waiting for the funds to be released,” he said.
In a separate interview with the hospital’s Administrator, Albert Mutsinze, it also came out that most of the bodies received at the hospital came through the police will be decomposing and their situation is compounded by the poor state of the mortuary equipment.
“Most of the decomposed bodies are coming in through the police and we are in the process of making some arrangements with authorities to give pauper’s burial to the decomposing bodies,” he added.
Mahusekwa District Hospital mortuary was now being used as an alternative as the Marondera hospital was getting overwhelmed .