Chinhoyi isolation centre opened Cde Mary Mliswa-Chikoka

Conrad Mupesa

Mash West Bureau

MASHONALAND WEST provincial isolation centre, which is equipped with state-of-the-art machinery sourced from well-wishers and the government was officially opened to Covid-19 patients last week.

The multi-million dollar fifty-five bed isolation centre situated at Chinhoyi Provincial Hospital, was officially opened by Mashonaland West Minister of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution, Mary Mliswa-Chikoka who is also the province’s Covid-19 task force team chairperson.

Minister Mliswa-Chikoka, a survivor of the pandemic, said the isolation centre which is equipped with modern life saving machinery will reduce burden at Harare Central and Parirenyatwa Hospitals where most Covid-19 critical patients from the province were being taken.

“The isolation centre is going to help save a lot of lives. While critically ill Covid-19 patients in need of life support system were previously transferred to Harare, the new isolation centre is going to give a lease of life to many who risk losing their lives on their way to Harare,” she said.

Minister Mliswa-Chikoka reiterated the need for communities to continue adhering to the Level Four lockdown regulations to help arrest the spiking cases of Covid-19 during the deadly second wave.

Chinhoyi Provincial Hospital superintendent, Dr Collet Mawire said a “supermarket approach” will be used to admit patients with Covid-19.

“The ward is now ready and we have made basic proper isolation centre requirements. The whole ward has negative pressure which is a prerequisite of any isolation centres. We also have piped oxygen in all the cubicles and about 49 points to supply oxygen to our patients.

“We have adopted “a supermarket approach” where we are admitting all patients that have Covid-19. Males, females, paediatric and maternity wards are incorporated as we seek to provide all the health care need of these patients to avoid further spread of the deadly disease,” he said.

He said maternity patients would also deliver in the same isolation centre which is supported with a labour ward and a fully functional theatre room.

The isolation centre also has modern and fully functional fire system, CCTV and oxygen supply monitoring system used in the monitoring of patients.

“At least 16 nurses, two sisters-in-charge, a matron and one or two doctors at any given time. Our rapid response team will however, be on standby despite shortage of staff.”

Although not enough, Dr Mawire said, most of the equipment which was supplied by the Chinese Embassy, Zimplats, The Ministry of Health and Child Care would go a long way in supporting the centre to kick start operations.

Mashonaland West provincial development coordinator, Mr Josphat Jaji and acting medical director, Dr Tapiwa Dhliwayo said efforts were now in place to complete setting up of isolation centres at Karoi, Chegutu, Makonde District and Kadoma General Hospitals.

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