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Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Parirenyatwa mental health unit undergoes renovations

Story by Abigirl Tembo, Health Editor

Parirenyatwa Group of Hospitals mental health unit is undergoing renovations to accommodate the ballooning number of drug and substance abuse patients.

To address the growing need for mental health facilities, Parirenyatwa Mental Health Hospital is undergoing renovations aimed at creating a more welcoming and therapeutic environment for patients.

In an interview with the ZBC News this Wednesday, the Head of Department – Parirenyatwa Mental Health Hospital, Dr Fungi Mazhandu said the expansion will allow the hospital to admit more patients and address the growing demand for services.

“We have been having an increase in mental health awareness globally including Zimbabwe and because of that, we have had an increase in those who have been presenting to Parirenyatwa mental health institution I think they started spilling over from Covid and because of that, we have managed to do renovations to meet the needs of our population so the renovations are meant at maintaining the care that we have always been giving to our patients.

“We are an admission facility, so we have been admitting patients with mental health disorders both male and female and the expansion is going to allow us to admit more patients to give them better facilities under more pleasurable experience as mental health has always had a lot of stigma so that we demystify the stigma around what mental health illness is. The expansion is supposed to make it safer for our patients and more aesthetically pleasing which is important in mental health. The female ward did not have an outdoor section and part of mental health is the enjoyment of sunshine and leisure exercise.

“We have also increased our occupational therapy space. A lot of people have always had concerns about the safety of their relatives here, we have increased the precast wall length so that our patients are safer. We have always tried to put a waiting area seeing that our patients have increased over the years. We are trying to make the whole experience more pleasurable and less stigmatised. More than 70% and sometimes up to 90% admitted were patients abusing drug and substance abuse.”

Dr Mazhandu highlighted a concerning trend where over 75 percent of admitted patients are struggling with drug and substance abuse.

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