By Joyce Mukucha
The shortage of health professionals has forced Chitungwiza Municipality to temporarily close St Mary’s Clinic with immediate effect.
Chitungwiza Municipality Acting Town Clerk, Dr. Tonderai Kasu revealed that the shortage of health professional staff is attributed to the COVID-19 pandemic which has seen front line health workers being infected and others losing their lives.
“As a result of the current severe staff shortages and with immediate effect, Chitungwiza Municipality will be temporarily closing one of its municipal clinics that is St Mary’s clinic.”
“Over the last one week, seven Chitungwiza City health department front line health workers have tested positive for Covid-19 and one of our front line health workers died after previously having tested positive for Covid-19. We also now have a total of 21 of our front line health workers that are currently in self-isolation because there are contacts of the positive cases,” said Dr. Kasu.
He indicated that even before the onset of the pandemic, Chitungwiza Municipality was already experiencing short staff challenge with respect to health professionals and the difficult situation of the COVID-19 epidemic has worsened these shortages of qualified health staff.
He highlighted that only emergency cases will be attended to during the temporary closure of the municipal clinic.
“This clinic shall remain open for emergency cases only, all non-emergency cases that would normally be seen at St Mary’s shall be attended to at Zengeza clinic for the time being.
“It is the shortage of staff that has prompted the temporary closure of one of our clinics but we shall continue offering the full range of health services at our other Municipal clinics,” he said.
Dr. Kasu also appealed to stakeholders and the community at large for their understanding and support during these trying and unprecedented times.
“We are and shall continue doing everything that we can to support and assist our staff. We would also like to take this opportunity to appeal to all our stakeholders and our community for their support and understanding during this very challenging time.”