• 1 Apr, 2024
  • United Zimbabwe Alliance

Communique on Medicines and Medical Supplies

Zimbabwe’s health sector is facing a profound crisis, exacerbated by decades of economic mismanagement. This crisis has resulted in the collapse of vital infrastructure, leaving hospitals without critical life-saving equipment and medicines. Public hospitals, once places of healing and refuge, have become increasingly undesirable for patients in need of essential medical care.

According to the UNICEF 2023 Report, “Zimbabwe's maternal mortality ratio stands at 363 per 100,000 live births, with an under-five mortality rate of 39.8 deaths per 1,000 live births (Census 2022). Although there have been slight reductions from previous estimates, the stagnant neonatal mortality rate of 31 deaths per 1,000 live births (MICS, 2019)”, underscores the dire inadequacy of our maternity facilities. Maternity theaters could be constructed and funded locally, yet our nation's mis-priorities have left us in this lamentable state, where preventable deaths continue to plague our communities.

The crisis extends beyond maternity care, encompassing the entire healthcare sector. The scarcity of cancer and dialysis machines in public hospitals severely limits their capacity to provide essential treatments. Countless Zimbabwean lives are lost daily due to this negligence, fueled by political apathy and the diversion of public funds to enrich individuals rather than sustain the institutions tasked with safeguarding citizens' health.

In addition, our hospitals lack proper intensive care units, leaving many vulnerable individuals without access to life-saving equipment in times of dire need. While the ruling elite seek medical treatment in well-equipped foreign hospitals at the expense of taxpayers, ordinary citizens are left to languish without adequate healthcare resources. 

United Zimbabwe Alliance (UZA) is deeply troubled by this dire state of affairs and urgently calls upon the government to prioritize funding for the health sector. It is imperative that our hospitals are equipped with proper medical equipment and essential medicines to enable healthcare professionals to fulfill their duties and save lives. As a political party committed to the welfare of all Zimbabweans, UZA proposes solutions to address this crisis, including: 

We must prioritize allocating adequate financial resources to procure essential medical equipment such as diagnostic machines, surgical instruments, and monitoring devices. Furthermore, ongoing funds should be allocated for the maintenance and servicing of this equipment to ensure its longevity and reliability. Investing in state-of-the-art medical technology will enhance the quality of healthcare services provided and improve patient outcomes across the country.   

Transparent and accountable systems should be established to oversee the allocation and utilization of healthcare funds. This includes implementing robust financial monitoring mechanisms to track expenditures, prevent corruption, and ensure that allocated funds are used efficiently and effectively. Transparency in financial management builds trust among stakeholders and ensures that healthcare resources are utilized for their intended purpose of improving patient care.   

Instead of relying solely on foreign medical facilities, the government should invest in strengthening local healthcare infrastructure. This involves upgrading existing hospitals and clinics, constructing new healthcare facilities in underserved areas, and equipping them with modern medical equipment and facilities. By enhancing local healthcare infrastructure, Zimbabweans will have greater access to quality healthcare services within their own communities, reducing the need for costly overseas medical treatments.

Promoting Research and Innovation in Healthcare: Investment in research and innovation in healthcare is essential to drive advancements in medical treatments, technologies, and healthcare delivery models. Collaboration between academia, research institutions, and the private sector can accelerate the development and adoption of innovative healthcare solutions tailored to Zimbabwe's needs.

Implementing these comprehensive solutions requires a concerted effort from government officials, healthcare professionals, civil society organizations, and the private sector, thus ensuring access to quality healthcare for all Zimbabweans. UZA stands ready to work collaboratively with all stakeholders to achieve this critical objective and alleviate the suffering of our people.