By Mbekezeli Ncube
THE number of patients who are being admitted at the United Bulawayo Hospitals (UBH) continues to rise as fears that the public medical facility was a Covid-19 hotspot eased.
The hospital was once designated as a Covid-19 centre only as cases of the pandemic spread in the country’s second capital city.
As the coronavirus cases dropped last month, the government allowed it to resume with its normal, but patients were unwilling to be admitted at the 350-bed facility due to the stigma associated with Covid-19.
However, things UBH authorities are now noticing a noticeable change, and this Thursday, at least 178 none Covid-19 patients were admitted at the centre.
UBH acting chief executive Narcacius Dzvanga confirmed the new developments.
“Just over a week ago, we had only 12 patients in our wards but this number has convincingly risen due to the media personnel who encouraged the public to come and receive our services,” said Dzvanga.
The hospital has also rearranged its wards to easily manage both Covid-19 wings and other patients at the vast institution.
“We are lucky that the hospital has several unique or stand-alone buildings. Very soon the designated Covid-19 zone will be operational. We are targeting the opening for 1 October.
“The introduction and access to the newer Covid-19 RDT antigen test have also helped in the triaging of all the patients. The antigen-based RDT is far superior to the antibody-based yet it takes more or less the time to process,” Dzvanga added.
Zimbabwe continues to notice a decline in Covid-19 infections. On Thursday the Health Ministry recorded 24 new cases bringing the total number of infections to 1 596 with 5 635 recoveries from 7 453 infections recorded since March.
A total of 222 Covid-19 deaths have been recorded.