Gweru Hospital Offers Free Orthopaedic Surgeries to Midlands Province Residents

May 30, 2024
WhatsApp Image 2024 05 30 at 125109 696x522 | Report Focus News

ZIMBABWE | Gweru Hospital is providing a vital lifeline to patients in the Midlands province with a free orthopaedic surgery camp running this week. Over 30 patients have already benefitted from the camp, which started on Monday, showcasing the combined efforts of improved healthcare services and a streamlined testing system.

With access to skilled medical staff and swift turnaround time for results, patients express their gratitude. “I am grateful to the government and the hospital staff here at Gweru Hospital for operating on me. I had osteotomy repair plus fixation of a malunited right lateral fracture, and I am now looking forward to a complete recovery.”

Another patient shared their experience: “I slipped and broke my ankle last year and have been trying to secure funding for the operation. Today, I am happy the operation was done successfully. Before the operation, I had some tests, and the results came back within a few hours.”

Dr. Brian Paketh, Gweru Provincial Hospital Specialist Orthopaedics and Trauma Surgeon, explained that the camp aims to address the backlog of critical orthopaedic surgeries. “The orthopaedic trauma cases we mainly receive in the province are from accidents, road traffic incidents, and artisanal mining activities. The main objective of this camp is to manage cases admitted to the wards who have spent a long time in the hospital. Prolonged admission has negative consequences as patients develop complications like depression, nosocomial infections, and bed sores. There is also a strain on the hospital and patients’ resources. The working class takes time to return to being economically productive, so we want to decongest the wards so that other patients awaiting the service at home can come in,” he said.

Mr. Evidence Makombe, Gweru Hospital Chief Scientist, emphasized their commitment to improving medical care through enhanced laboratory services. “As a hospital, we must facilitate quick management of patients for better outcomes. We also receive samples from other districts in the province and apply the same principle to those patients to minimize turnaround time,” he explained.

The success of the camp is amplified by the Integrated Specimen Transport (IST) programme, a government initiative in collaboration with partners like UNDP and the Global Fund, which has significantly improved diagnostics for various illnesses beyond HIV/AIDS. This includes essential tests for TB, infants born with or exposed to HIV, and a range of other health concerns. The IST programme ensures timely sample transportation and analysis, contributing to better patient care across the country.