PPE availability has improved, but quality is debatable

PPE availability has improved, but quality is debatable

Zimbabwe Senior Hospital Doctors Association (ZSHDA) says it is happy that the availability of personal protective equipment (PPE) has improved but are worried about the quality.

The doctors said they are not happy especially with the PPE that is being manufactured locally.

In an interview on Tuesday Talk, Dr Shingie Chiurunge urged the government to be strict on standards to ensure effectiveness.

“So the level of PPE has improved. But we still need to address the issue of training and reinforcement of that training. We need to address consistent availability and then the quality of the PPE that is being availed.

“Yes we have opened up to local players as well but we would really pray and ask for the regulatory authorities such as Standards Association of Zimbabwe and the Ministry to please ensure quality.

“We are the end-users and our lives are on the line when people are being licenced to supply but products are not worthy,” she said.

Challenges of PPE in Zimbabwe

Issues of PPE have been topical in Zimbabwe since the outbreak of COVID-19 in March of 2020.

This saw nurses and doctors staging endless demonstrations as they feared for their lives.

Zimbabwe had to rely on donations from the corporate sector both local and international.

Chinese business Jack Ma, Telecomms mogul Strive Masiiwa and his wife Tsitsi also made meaningful contributions.

The Zimbabwean government was on record saying they had no adequate funds to provide enough PPE.

This was despite the fact that it was constantly declaring surplus and had also come up with a health levy.

Health has never been a priority for the government which has failed to meet the Abuja Declaration on funding health.

COVID-19 cases are on an increase in the country. This resulted in Vice President Constantino Chiwenga declaring a 30-day lockdown. #OpenCovidContract

PPE availability has improved, but quality is debatable