The City of Mutare Thursday handed over the Mutare Infectious Diseases hospital to the Health Ministry as part of the government’s move to centralise the management of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The medical facility is now under the total management of government.
Speaking at the handover ceremony, city mayor Blessing Tandi said there was still a lot of work to be done to make the facility attain standards of a modern infectious diseases isolation and treatment centre due to years of neglect.
He said the $12 million disbursed by the government for the hospital upgrade had been exhausted but more work was yet to be done to finish the main hospital wing.
“We still have a long way to go and let’s continue to rally behind the project and forge more partnerships,” he said.
Tandi said the renovated intensive care unit required more than $30 million to equip with relevant medical equipment.
“We want to applaud government for disbursing $12 million for upgrading the Covid-19 facility. It made a positive impact, but we have since exhausted the grant and we have a lot more outstanding works which require more funding,” the mayor said.
He said a total of US$1.7 million was needed to fully transform the facility and equip it with relevant equipment for infectious disease control.
“We need more funds to construct a mortuary, incinerator, and administration block,” he said.
The mayor also appealed to the corporate to support the initiative but expressed gratitude to the Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries (CZI) for assisting towards the construction of the facility.
He urged residents to remain on high alert and practise social distancing as well as maintain personal hygiene.
Manicaland provincial minister, Ellen Gwaradzimba challenged the local authority to diligently enforce Covid-19 lockdown regulations on all businesses and ensure operators failing to meet the required standards had their operations closed.
“We don’t want to put the lives of our people at risk by allowing any business that does not conform to the preventative measures to remain operational,” she said.