Cletus Mushanawani News Editor
THE three identified Covid-19 centres for Chimanimani District last week received a shot in the arm from a local development partner that availed surgical equipment and building material worth US$8 000.
Through its mental health wing, Tsuro Trust sourced the equipment and materials from well-wishers. They are targeting the frontline workers who are at high risk of contracting Covid-19 and are also addressing the mental illnesses that might be brought about by the pandemic.
Although a section at Biriiri Rural Hospital has been set aside to be an isolation centre, the two buildings are still far away from meeting basic standards to make admissions.
When The Manica Post visited the hospital last Friday, the buildings were crying for a fresh coat of paint. Some window panes were shattered, while some doors were missing. The beds had no mattresses and there was no electricity. Inspired by the sorry state of affairs at Biriiri Rural Hospital, Tsuro Trust donated sanitisers, spray bottles, surgical masks, latex gloves, blood pressure testing machines, a nebulizer machine, doom suits, goggles, wheelchairs, high density mattresses, a suction machine, paint and some doors, among other things.
Work to refurbish the buildings was expected to commence this week.
The Chimanimani district is at high risk of infections because of the porous nature of the border with Mozambique, as well as an influx of gold panners from all over the country.
Tsuro Trust board chairman, Engineer Archibald Dzingire said they realised the need to spruce up the district’s isolation centres.
“Our main target is the frontline workers who are the medical practitioners and their aides. Our mental health wing saw it fit to come to their rescue.
“Most of the time they suffer from mental stress when they do not have the basic PPE.
“We need to equip them with the necessary equipment so that we save their lives. That way we will not lose the personnel that was supposed to assist hundreds of people. If caregivers die, the country will lose out,” said Eng Dzingire. He bemoaned the influx of gold panners in the district, saying they pose a high risk of spreading Covid-19.
“We are now a confluence of gold panners from across the country and Mozambique. There is a risk that illegal panning areas will be the Covid-19 hot spots. While local businesses are adhering to lockdown measures, there are plenty of vendors selling their wares to the gold panners here, thereby exposing the villagers to Covid-19.
“Our border with Mozambique is also porous and some vendors from that country are also flocking here with various goods.
Eng Dzingire pledged that his organisation will continue complimenting Government’s efforts in fighting Covid-19.
Tsuro Trust mental health co-ordinator, Mr Custon Masango said, “Chimanimani is yet to fully recover from the effects of Cyclone Idai and cases of mental health are likely to surge due to the advent of the Covid-19 pandemic. We are doing everything we can to carry out awareness campaigns across the district.
“Research has shown that Covid-19 also has an effect on mental health. It is better to be proactive and save lives.”
Chimanimani District Development Co-ordinator, Mr Joseph Manyurapasi hailed Tsuro Trust for their timely intervention.
“Their effort will go a long way in upping our preparedness as a district. We have bills of quantities for what is needed at the isolation centres, but resources are a challenge.
“We will make sure that work commences in earnest. All stakeholders needs to work together to save lives,” said Mr Manyurapasi.