|Kereke lambasts health policies|
|Saturday, 21 July 2012 00:00|
ROCK Foundation Hospital founder, Dr Munyaradzi Kereke, has lambasted policies that regulate the health sector as backward and detrimental to potential investment by the private sector. Presenting the history of RMC Hospital at its official launch in Harare yesterday, Dr Kereke said it was sad that it was still a criminal offence for a health institution to advertise services.
He bemoaned the fact that medical aid societies were allowed by law to go up to 120 days without making payments to a service provider.
“With over 32 years of post political independence, it is unfortunate that Zimbabwe’s medical sector continues to be regulated under colonial era laws that stifle efficiency,” Dr Kereke said.
He said individuals intending to invest in the health sector were required to pay import duties, Value Added Tax on equipment sourced from outside the country.
Dr Kereke called on regulatory councils to be fair in their treatment of players intending to venture in the health sector.
He said the recent licensure of his institution from Rock Foundation Medical Care to a fully-fledged hospital is a dream come true.
“Dream come true because the road we have travelled to achieve this milestone was filled with considerable obstacles which we overcame by the grace of God and our resolute determination,” Dr Kereke said.
The 26-bed hospital recently got a license to operate as a hospital and was awarded a Grade A status.
Services offered at the private institution include CT-scans, mammography, multi-disciplinary laboratory services, theatre eye and dental services.
RMC Hospital medical director Dr Darlington Zhakata said the institution had entered into partnerships with Government hospitals where they provide services in areas where Government does not have equipment.
"Similar strategic alliances have also been put in place with City of Harare where RMCs ambulances cover Harare on times their ambulances are down or overstretched to meet demand for services," Dr Zhakata said.
Officially launching RMC Hospital, Chitungwiza Central Hospital chief executive officer, Dr Obadiah Moyo, who was guest of honour, said the state-of-the-art hospital filled the service delivery gap most public institutions have to deal with.
Dr Moyo called on regulatory authorities and other health institutions to support private sector investments.
"Zimbabwe will certainly grow to greater levels if more and more private sector players take the same route and invest in infrastructural projects that benefit the people," Dr Moyo said.
Health advisor in the Office of the President Dr Timothy Stamps, Senate President Edna Madzongwe and Labour and Social Welfare Minister Paurina Mpariwa were some of the dignitaries who graced RMC Hospital launch.