MBERENGWA – Chiefs in Mberengwa have in a bid to save lives called for the closure of Jeka Hospital which has not only run out of supplies but has been without water for the past two months.
Jeka is the biggest referral hospital in Mberengwa District.
Potsai Tseifi who is Chief Mposi told The Mirror in an interview that patients are starving at the hospital because the referral center has run out of food. He also said that there were no drugs at the hospital. Sources at the hospital added that the hospital has been without water for the last two months because water pipes were swept away by recent floods.
The hospital is also said to be running without power after the generator broke down in October last year. Chief Mposi said that he had since written a letter to the District Medical Officer to intervene.
"As traditional leaders we think the best thing is to close this hospital. Right now there is no water at the hospital since the pipes from Chimwe Dam were swept away by floods. Patients have to get their water from unprotected water sources like Mwenezi River. I wrote to the district medical office for them to address the situation.
"The situation is getting out of hand," said Chief Mposi.
The District Medical Officer, Doctor Gabriel Ndagurwa said he was not aware of the situation but had instructed the hospital staff to purchase supplies locally since they could not access the district office due to broken down bridges.
Patients who spoke to The Mirror said relatives were bringing food from home but those who came from faraway places were starving.
"Kana chipatara chisingasakwanisi kupa murwere chekudya kuti amwe mapiritsi zviri nani chivhare (If a hospital cannot provide food for patients to take their tablets it is better for it to close). In the morning, people are given tasteless porridge as breakfast while in the afternoon and evening a patient is given a small portion of sadza with poorly cooked relish," said a patient who identified himself as Tazviona Masarira.
A villager from Ruvabvuarea said her relative who was admitted at the hospital passed away due to the unavailability of medication.
"The government must do something with this hospital. My aunt passed away a few days ago because the hospital had no drugs for her. How can they continue to run a hospital without medication and food," said Perseverance Zhou.
Chief Mudavanhu also said he wanted the hospital to be closed.