By Bulawayo Correspondent
THORNGROVE Hospital in Bulawayo, which is one of the two infectious diseases hospitals that have been established to cater for coronavirus patients, is still ill-equipped to admit patients as government has not provided any funding.
In January, Health Minister Obadiah Moyo confirmed that Thorngrove and Harare’s Wilkins Hospitals would be equipped with state-of-the-art machinery in preparation of treating and quarantining coronavirus patients.
Both medical facilities are owned by the respective local councils.
Addressing journalists in Bulawayo recently, council health director, Edwin Sibanda said the municipality was still waiting for government to release funds for the renovation of the facility despite presenting its budget for the needed equipment.
“We are waiting for an allocation from the Ministry of Health. As I speak, the ministry is ceased with the matter. The renovations are now a national programme,” said Sibanda.
The health director said although the Thorngrove isolation centre is owned by the local authority, the centre would cater for the whole of the southern region.
“Thorngrove covers all Matabeleland, Midlands and Masvingo provinces,” said Sibanda.
Three weeks ago, the Global Fund director, Peter Sands said the Zimbabwe government had been allocated US$25 million to fight the coronavirus and the funds would be available in less than five days.
This week, Sakunda Holdings injected millions of dollars into two projects to resuscitate and equip Rock Foundation Medical Centre and St Annes Hospital, both in Harare, to be medical centres to treat the coronavirus.
However, the injection of funds into the two private medical centres has been viewed as a move by senior Zanu PF and government officials to prepare coronavirus treatment centres for the elite as they are unable to travel out of the country to seek medical attention due to travel restrictions placed on foreign nationals, let alone those seeking treatment for Covid-19.