Parirenyatwa dedicates half of main hospital to COVID-19 cases

By Chris Mahove

Half of hospital beds at Parirenyatwa hospital in Harare are occupied by COVID-19 patients, a senior official has said.

This was said by Parirenyatwa Group of Hospitals’ CEO, Aspect Maunganidze at the hand-over ceremony of PPE and food hampers by Old Mutual at the hospital Friday.

The financial institution donated PPEs and food hampers to four hospitals namely Parirenyatwa, Mpilo, Mutare and Kwekwe Provincial hospitals.

“Our hospital has had a long journey with COVID-19 where we took up the task to dedicate half of the main hospital, which is 435 beds to COVID cases . This is a huge task considering that we were going through unchartered waters. None of us were of the risks that we were facing, meaning we have a very dedicated team of health care workers who committed to work in unchartered waters despite the major risks they faced,” Munganidze said.

He said the support they were getting from the business community had motivated frontline workers to stay on and fight, despite that coming with risks that also saw some of them being affected and hospitalised, with a few having succumbed .

“It is the availability of scientifically proven PPE to protect us from COVID that has made it safe for us to work with COVID patients. Without PPE we would not have any COVID care to talk about.

“ In addition our staff needs to be motivated. We are all aware that the economic environment they are in has many challenges and coming to work in a COVID  zone, our colleagues  might  not have the liberty and the time that we all take for granted without proper resources and supplies for their families,”.

Each of the four hospitals received 500 waterproof gowns, 500 face masks boxes, 500 face shields,  500 plastic aprons, 500 latex gloves boxes and 500 Hazmut blue lined suits. The financial services giant is also providing hampers to the health workers.

The donations were made through the Business Fighting Covid Trust, and organisation set up last year in March by the business community in response to the challenges that were caused by the Covid 19 lockdown.

Speaking during the hand-over ceremony,  Old Mutual Head of Corporate Affairs, Crispen Dzingira, on behalf of his CEO Sam Matsekete, said the donation was a key facet of the Old Mutual Mutual business ethics which focused on addressing the concerns of the wider community and making donations in critical areas of need.

He said the financial institution appreciated the work that the government was doing  towards mitigating the harsh effects of the Covid-19 pandemic throughout the country.

“As Old Mutual we acknowledge this great effort, and we would like to support government’s efforts by donating personal protective equipment (PPE) to be used by frontline workers at Hospitals in hotspots across the country”.

He saluted the health workers for their hard work and commitment in the fight against Covid-19 and assured them of continued support from Old Mutual.

“As a responsible corporate citizen, we will continue to invest in communities in which we operate to foster social development and economic progress.  To achieve this, the health of our communities is critical hence this donation to health workers. They are not alone in this fight.  We are in it together Sisonke – Tiri Tose,” he said

Business Fighting Covid Trust Secretary, Nqobile Munzara said the trust had identified humanitarian challenges that needed urgent attention and institutions that took in vulnerable groups such as women affected by domestic violence and some of our people who live in the streets that they would be assisting.

“As the business sector we realised that the area that we can assist and contribute is to say thank you so much for all the effort that you are putting. You have been with us during this difficult time. So this year we distributed quite a number of donations from a number of business organisations . We are here today with Old Mutual and we are grateful to the business community for the support . They are saying even we are not performing well as businesses in a pandemic situation; this is the little that we can do for our frontline heroes,” she said..