Government taking steps to ensure quality universal health care

By Abigirl Tembo

ZIMBABWE is set to partner with the United Arab Emirates (UAE) health care service providers as part of efforts to ensure quality universal health care coverage for its citizens.

The UAE is home to some of the best specialist hospitals in the world, with the Zimbabwean health delegation comprising medical experts and academics visiting some of the health facilities in search of long-term partnerships.

The delegation’s first port of call was Al Zahra Hospital, a multi-specialist hospital with over 100 specialists and an international clientele.

“We offer over 32 specialities and we have partnered with several African countries. We have been working for many years with Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya and Sudan and there is room for collaboration with Zimbabwe also,” said Rania Roxana Akkela, Al Zahra Hospital Dubai’s director of Marketing and Business Development.

Another UAE health care services provider, First Response, expressed interest in working with Zimbabwe to provide telemedicine facilities in line with global health standards.

“Zimbabwe as a country has always been on my attention list because there is huge potential and I think if you want to match with the global health care standards, a lot of opportunities can be found in Zimbabwe. So I am very optimistic and if everything goes well we will plan to make something big,” noted First Response managing director and CEO, Pavan Sharma.

After the tour, the Acting Minister of Health and Child Care, Professor Amon Murwira was delighted with the fruitful engagements saying it allowed them to interact with potential investors.

“We plan to make sure that our national health care system gets investments to get a revamp. So, today was a day of looking at the health care facilities and also try to see what kind of partnerships we can have with these facilities. As you see, we have vice-chancellors with us, Ministry of Health Directors and officials from the Ministry of
Industry, which is mainly the main core of what we call the triple helix of our health care system,” he said.

Dubai is among the few countries in the world which have started robotics surgery, a field which Zimbabwe is considering to venture into.