Health budget largely funds salaries, and operations whilst neglecting capital expenditure

Health budget largely funding salaries, operations whilst neglecting capital expenditure
Health budget largely funding salaries, operations whilst neglecting capital expenditure

About 73% of ZW$473 billion National Budget allocated to the Ministry of Health and Child Care will go towards salaries leaving very little for other things such as procurement of drugs and equipment.

The health sector in Zimbabwe is suffering from myriad of challenges due to alleged lack of adequate funding, as well as delays in the disbursement of allocated funds.

This has seen most hospitals and health institutions failing to service equipment of procure new ones.

At some time, public hospitals across the country had suspend serious operations due to breakdown of critical equipment.

Parliament recently raised complain that it is worrisome that investment in capital projects has continued to decline.

‘’The Committee is concerned that the bulk of the health budget is going towards salaries (73.1%) and recurrent expenditure (18.6%) leaving only 8.3% for capital projects.

‘’Investment in capital projects continues to decline yet this is where significant share of the budget must go in order to address the deplorable state of the health system.

‘’Gross underinvestment in health infrastructure leaves the Ministry of Health incapacitated to deliver the expected health services. In addition, the capital budget is largely biased towards the construction of hospitals whilst neglecting the procurement of tools of trade for medical personnel,’’ said the Committee on Health and Child Care.

Meanwhile, the committee has also revealed that the current budget allocations are not improved, they will not be enough to address brain drain in the health sector.

‘’The 2023 National budget is grossly inadequate to address the massive brain drain of nurses and doctors. Further, the Committee is deeply concerned with the heavy-handed way the Government used to end the recent strikes by the health personnel.

‘’The strikes were not properly managed and instead fueled the massive exit of health personnel into the region and beyond.  They continue to earn salaries in RTGS yet meet their living expenses in USD,’’ said the committee