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    Saturday, 10 September 2016

    Pregnant women deliver at home as Gweru clinic is closed for 2 years



    ELIZABETH MASHIRI
    MIDLANDS BUREAU

    GWERU
    – Minor renovations to the ceiling, walls, floors and infection standardisation control at Mtapa has kept the council-run clinic closed for two years forcing several women to deliver at home or on their way to other medical centres which are far from their residences.
    There is an outcry from women in Mtapa, one of the biggest suburbs in Gweru over the closure of the maternity ward. Women who spoke to The Mirror said that several pregnant women have given birth either at home or on the way to the nearest clinic in Mkoba because they are too poor to afford an ambulance or a taxi if they suddenly get into labour.
    Mtapa Clinic is within walking distance of three suburbs, namely Mtapa, Ascot and Mambo.
    Gweru City Council Director of Health Services Samson Sekenhamo confirmed the closure of the ward.
    "The maternity wing was closed in 2014 to pave way for renovations to meet modern requirements of health institutions in service delivery but we are almost done, I think we are almost 80 percent done now," said Sekenhamo
    A survey by The Mirror established that at least 60 pregnant women who live around the three suburbs attend checkups every Wednesday at Mtapa Clinic but are then referred to clinics in other suburbs for example Senga or Mkoba Polyclinic for delivery.
    "I do not think that council is letting the Mtapa populace down we are still offering other services the difference now is we now refer deliveries to some of our clinics which are also cheap and affordable," said Sekenhamo
    Mtapa constituency MP Cecil Zvidzai however, said the closure of the maternity ward was of serious concern since Mtapa is the poor side of the town.
    "It's a big concern considering the fact that most lower income earning people live in Mtapa. The residents have raised this issue many times and l have tried to engage council but the response is very slow.
    "I had to book for an audience with the Minister of Healthy and Child Care this week because this is a serious issue affecting mostly the poor," said Zvidzai
    Florence Guza, a member of the Woman Coalition said that her organization had raised the same matter with council and it was particularly with the concern that some women were delivering along the way to clinics that are far off.
    "We approached council after we received some reports that some women delivered while they were walking to Mkoba Poly Clinic.health news

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