UBH COVID-19 centre to open next month

By Yolanda Moyo

The United Bulawayo Hospitals (UBH) COVID-19 centre is set to open next month, with 90 per cent of renovation work now complete.

The Bartley Memorial Block (BMB) at United Bulawayo Hospitals (UBH) will at any given time admit 100 COVID-19 patients referred from hospitals in the Matabeleland region.

Acting UBH Chief Executive Officer, Dr Narcasius Dzvanga said the opening of the centre, though delayed by engineering technicalities, will come as a huge relief.

“We have admitted close to 30 or so Covid-19 patients so far. We are now running both Covid-19 and non-Covid-19 activities. Educate the public that UBH is safe. We are still struggling with the stigma that UBH is a predominantly Covid-19 centre. As recently as yesterday we have opened our Outpatients department though on low key. Once we have a dedicated COVID-19 hospital, the consumption of PPEs will rise.”

At the moment, COVID-19 patients in need of hospitalisation are using Richard Morris Hospital which is housed within UBH.

Meanwhile, International Medical Corps donated Personal Protective wear to health facilities in Bulawayo as the consumption of PPEs is on the increase with nurses now back at work.

“In response to the detrimental effects of the pandemic especially to the health workers, IMC is compelled to donate PPE in the form of face masks and face shields to the 17 health care facilities. These are meant to assist in minimising the exposure of health workers to the coronavirus,” International Medical Corps Acting Country Director Tryvas Chimwene Banda said.

Bulawayo has four designated Covid-19 centres and three have been undergoing renovations since the outbreak of the pandemic in March.