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HealthTalk: Bring in transformational leaders at central hospitals

A poor health delivery system is never good for an economy as health financing is part of the six building blocks of a strong health system

The tenets of transformational leadership are idealised influence, inspirational motivation, intellectual stimulation and individual consideration.

This type of leadership approach causes significant changes in individuals and social systems.

In general, employees are encouraged and inspired to innovate and develop new ways to grow and improve the path to an organization’s success.

Lately, social media was awash with news that things were out of order at Sally Mugabe Hospital with no running water, no essential drugs, linen and other basic items that are required on a daily basis.

It is flabbergasting to note that a central hospital serving the majority of city dwellers is allowed to deteriorate to such a frightening state in this era and age.

One wonders why our central hospitals continue to suffer incessantly when there is great potential to improve by the day.

A poor health delivery system is never good for an economy as health financing is part of the six building blocks of a strong health system if a country is to attain a desirable health delivery service.

We are happy that Gweru Provincial Hospital has been upgraded to a state-of-the-art facility with a modern intensive care unit, high dependency unit, digital radiological unit, modern OPD department, refurbished wards and the general outlook.

We pay tribute to the hospital chief medical officer, Fabian Mashingaidze for the job well done.

The upgrading of Gweru Hospital is sweet news for every citizen of this country, with medical students from the Midlands State University poised to benefit immensely from the development.

Questions remain lingering in my brain as to why Sally Mugabe, Parirenyatwa, Chitungwiza Hospitals continue to struggle at a time when health service delivery is expected to be robust.

Everyone understands that funding in the health sector has been very much limited with inadequate budgetary allocations.

The Abuja Declaration of 2001 calls for at least 15% of the national budget to be allocated to the health sector, alas, Zimbabwe had 10.6%, 11.2% and 10.8% of the total budget in 2022, 2023 and 2024 respectively.

What it means is that there is need to cover the finance gap by an innovative leadership. I do believe that some of the hospital bosses may not have the pre-requisite qualifications for their esteemed offices, a phenomenon that may be driven by patronage, favouritism or nepotism.

Everyone should understand the significance of meritocracy in any organisation.

I had some chats with some of medical colleagues who found it difficult to donate what they wanted to some of our central hospitals.

The process of wanting to donate is arduous and a lot of people end up getting fizzled out. Is it the bureaucratic system of governance that prohibits fellow Zimbabweans from donating to Sally Mugabe, Parirenyatwa, Mpilo, UBH or Chitungwiza?

Some of our colleagues wanted to drill boreholes at one of these hospitals but the mundane process of implementing the project leaves one wondering if it is a crime to positively contribute to the growth of our health care system.

Who is stalling such rightful manoeuvres by fellow citizens?

Is it the top government officials, the ministry officials, the hospital executives or it is just mere maladministration at local level that will then be good at scapegoating?

It is time to liberalise the donations to hospitals as long as they are vetted and deemed safe and relevant for the country and the healthcare facilities.

The country requires transformational leaders who can drive our health forward. Having rigid hospital executives who cannot think outside the box is tantamount to health suicide and many lives will be lost because of managerial incompetence.

If Wicknell Chivhayo can purchase multi-million dollar vehicles for artists, I do not think he will refuse to sort the miserable water system at Sally Mugabe Hospital if he is approached.

Open the doors for every citizen of Zimbabwe; one more dollar is better than nothing!

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