Ministry of Health and Child Care

Ministry of Health and Child Care The Ministry of Health and Child Care is committed to: Making health services more responsive to the needs of individuals,families,and communities.

The Ministry of Health and Child Welfare is committed to: Making health services more responsive to the needs of individuals,families,and communities. Improving quality of all health care services in health institutions.

Mission: To have the highest possible level of health and quality of life for all citizens of Zimbabwe.

Operating as usual


Malaria Claims 1
Malaria claimed 1 life during the week ending 20 September 2020 in Mbire District a high burden region in Mashonaland Central Province. Of the reported cases 244(13.6%) were from the under five years of age. A total of 1798 cases were recorded, with Mashonaland Central Province recording 594 cases and Manicaland Province recording 517 cases. The cumulative figures for malaria from week 1 to week 38 stand at 368 914 and 368 deaths. The cumulative CFR is 0.1%.


Mpilo Central Hospital has successfully implemented measures to reduce maternal mortality from an average of three deaths per week to zero which include reasonable service delivery, free maternal services and free blood transfusion services.
On average the hospital witnesses 30 deliveries a day.
There have been massive reductions in maternal mortality from an average of 3 per week to zero or three per month.

The 18th Chinese Medical Team arrives in Zimbabwe. A 10- member medical team includes experts from various departments; ...

The 18th Chinese Medical Team arrives in Zimbabwe. A 10- member medical team includes experts from various departments; Radiology, Colon and Rectal,Neonatal Intensive Care Unit,
Gynecology, Cardiologist, Anesthesiology,Urology, Orthopedics, Traditional Chinese Medicine (Respiratory) Department,
Department of Respiratory of Hunan Provincial People's Hospital.
The 17th medical team will be leaving on Friday.

World Sanitation Week

Following last week's commemorations of World Sanitation Week, watch Ministry of Health and Child Care Acting Deputy Director Water, Sanitation & Waste Management, Mr Charles Siachema, giving an overview of the global event & what the ministry is doing to improve sanitation in the country.

Interview with Acting Deputy Director Water Sanitation and Waste Management, Mr Charles Siachema.


VP Chiwenga visits airports as nation prepares for International flights

Cabinet during its sitting on 8 September 2020, approved the opening of skies to both domestic and international flights with effect from 10th September and 1st October 2020, respectively.
Honourable Vice President and Minister of Health and Child Care, (Rtd) General Dr Constantino Chiwenga toured Robert Gabriel Mugabe, Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo and Victoria Falls International Airports today to assess their state of preparedness to receive international flights.
The tour involved seeing if Port Health, Immigration and ZIMRA facilities were ready for the resumption of international flights. The aspects spelling out readiness included availibility of disinfection booths and safety for both workers and travellers as they go through the clearing processes on arrival or leaving the country.
Speaking to journalists after touring Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo International Airport, VP Chiwenga expressed his satisfaction on the state of preparedness although there were just minor issues which needs to be addressed.
“The facilities are quite good I am impressed by what I have been briefed by CAAZ (Civil Aviation Authority of Zimbabwe).
“They are now prepared for the reopening of both domestic and International airports,” said VP Chiwenga.
The Vice President called for uniformity in terms of set up and on offering seamless service to all travellers paying particular attention to top notch health facilities.
“There are one or two things which I advised them to put in place and those are not an issue here.
“We have been to RGM International Airport in Harare and we would want all our airports to have the same set up so that we don’t have problems with our domestic travellers and tourists who would be coming to Zimbabwe or leaving. We must make sure that they are well looked after and all our health facilities are in place,” said VP Chiwenga.

The VP was accompanied by Permanent Secretary Health and Child Care, Air Commodore Dr Jasper Chimedza.The event was also attended by Minister of State for Bulawayo Metropolitan Province and Devolution Affairs, Judith Ncube and Minister of Environment, Tourism and Hospitality Services, Mangaliso Ndlovu. VP Chiwenga and his entourage thereafter made a visit to Victoria Falls International Airport.

JMN Airport Tour

Today, VP & Minister of Health and Child Care, (Rtd) General Dr Constantino G.D.N Chiwenga, toured Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo Int. Airport in Bulawayo to assess its readiness to resume operations as the country relaxes Covid-19 restrictions on international travel. He also toured Robert Gabriel Mugabe & Victoria Falls International Airports.

VP & Minister of Health and Child Care tours Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo International Airport


Ministry of Health joins the world in celebrating Patient Safety Day

Deputy Minister of Health and Child Care, Dr John Mangwiro delivered a key note address on the Zoom platform yesterday as the country joined the rest of the world in celebrating World Patient Safety Day which runs under the theme ‘Health Worker Safety: A Priority for Patient Safety’ with the slogan ‘Safe health workers, Safe Patients’ and calling for action to ‘Speak up for health worker safety’
“It is my absolute pleasure to officiate on this momentous day to commemorate patient Safety day. This year it comes at a time when health is on everyone’s mind as we fight this invisible enemy the coronavirus causing COVID-19,” said Dr Mangwiro.

The Deputy Minister of Health explained the day was set aside by the World Health Assembly in May 2019 with a view to promote patient safety.
“World Patient Safety Day is now an annual event celebrated on 17th of September, established by the 72nd World Health Assembly, in May 2019, with the adoption of resolution WHA72.6 on ‘Global action on patient safety’.
“The resolution recognizes patient safety as a global health priority whose origin is firmly grounded in the fundamental principle of medicine of: – First, do no harm. Setting the tone that no one should be harmed in the process of delivering care,” said the Deputy Minister of Health.
“This year’ theme, Health Worker Safety: A Priority for Patient Safety, recognises a very important prerequisite to patient safety that is a safe and healthy health worker. My Ministry and indeed the Government of Zimbabwe places the health care worker at the centre of the health delivery system of our nation. The welfare of health care workers takes priority if we are to see our health delivery system getting to the levels we desire,” said Dr Mangwiro.

Dr Mangwiro pointed out that past practices were skewed towards patients and neglecting the health workers and stated that the new thrust was aimed striking a balance between the two by further engaging patients.

“Traditionally, systems, policies and practices in health care have been focusing on the patient and not on the healthcare workers to the detriment of the very goal of looking after the patients. It is our time to “Care of the Carer”.
“Patient Safety Day commemorations today assists us in advancing and shaping the patient safety agenda by focusing and driving improvements in some key strategic areas through engaging patients and families for safer health care monitoring improvements in patient safety,” said Dr Mangwiro.
Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health, Air Commodore Dr Jasper Chimedza weighed in and noted that some deaths occur due to errors which results in long term impact on the patient.
“Some studies suggest that Zimbabwe record as many as 1 000 deaths annually as a result of errors or preventable harm. Not every case of harm results in death, yet they can cause long term impact on the patient’s physical health, emotional heath, financial well-being, or family relationships,” said the Health Secretary.
Dr Chimedza spelt out Ministry of Health’s commitment to address health workers’ safety which translates into patient safety.
“At MoHCC (Ministry of Health), we believe patient safety has to be addressed and must start with addressing health workers’ safety. A safe worker is a pre-requisite for a sustained safe working environment and ultimately the safety of the client who in most cases is the patient,” said Dr Chimedza.
“On 17 September, we celebrate World Patient Safety Day because we realise quality health care, the first step is to do no harm, yet in hospitals in low- and middle- income countries globally, every year, there are 134 million adverse events due to unsafe care, contributing to 2.6 million lives lost,” said World Health Organisation Representative, Dr Midzi who delivered a key message of the WHO Regional Director for Africa, Dr Matshidiso Moeti.
Dr Midzi stated that health workers were also at risk of being infected whilst discharging their duties with figures standing at 41 000 during this COVID-19 era.
“Frontline health workers are at greater risk of infection because of the care they provide to patients.
“In WHO Africa Region, more than 41 000 health workers have been infected with COVID-19, accounting for 3.8% of all reported cases,” said Dr Midzi.
The celebrations were coordinated by Ministry of Health and Child Care Director for Quality Assurance and Improvement, Musiwarwo Chirume.


Mass Drug Administration (MDA)

The Ministry of Health and Child Care (MoHCC), with support from WHO, is conducting a Mass Drug Administration (MDA) exercise against Schistosomiasis (Bilharzia) and Soil Transmitted Helminthes (STH) in Mashonaland Central Province's Mt Darwin and Shamva districts from the 21st to the 30th of September 2020. Praziquantel will be administered to a target population aged 5 years and above for Bilharzia, while Albendazole will be administered to 1 years olds and above against STH.
The MDA comes as a stop gate measure against the transmission cycle of the two Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs) which were found to have high prevalence in the 2 districts. However, MoHCC acknowledges the significant role played by other socio-economic determinant factors in driving the scourge of bilharzia and STH through activities such as fishing, gold panning, dip water gardening and swimming, among others. As a result, MoHCC continues to promote self protection and water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) practices in communities.
If left untreated, STH can cause severe stomach pains, malnutrition, stunted growth and long term disability while Bilharzia can lead to major complications such as high blood pressure, seizures, bacterial infections, urinary obstruction, organ damage and even death.
MoHCC has since conducted capacity building trainings in the two districts to enable health workers to implement the MDA within the COVID-19 context. Henceforth, the Ministry calls on all participants involved to adhere to the preventive measures as advised by teams on the ground and these include:
• Putting on a face mask
• Observing physical distancing and
• Frequent handwashing.
MoHCC further calls on all eligible persons and caregivers to take this opportunity to access the MDA medicines at their respective designated health facilities and schools, as well as outreach sites from the 21st to the 30th of September.


PPE production by industry and tertiary institutions on the rise

Ad-hoc Inter Ministerial Taskforce on COVID19 met recently as usual and in a media briefing, Minister of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services, Monica Mutsvangwa stated that efforts were being directed towards local production of personal protective equipment (PPEs) by local industries and tertiary institutions.
“Additionally, Government continues to make strides in ensuring that the country’s preparedness and response plans are upgraded. As part of the efforts to boost self-sufficiency through import substitution, local industries and tertiary institutions continue to ramp up production of PPEs and drugs,” said Minister Mutsvangwa.
The University of Zimbabwe has upped its game and went a step further and they are now manufacturing swabs for COVID-19 testing.
“The University of Zimbabwe and a local company have begun manufacturing swabs required for collecting COVID-19 samples,” said the Minister of Information.
For quality assurance, the swabs will undergo some tests by the Ministry of Health and Natpharm to make sure that they meet international standards.
“The swabs have been submitted to the Ministry of Health and Child Care and to Natpharm for quality assurance tests,” said Minister Mutsvangwa.
The production of PPE by local tertiary institutions and industries feeds into the new Ministry of Health strategy of creating synergies between Government, private sector industry and higher and tertiary education institutions and reduce the import bill of such materials.


Recently, Zimbabwe joined the world in commemorating World Patient Safety Day under the theme "Health Worker Safety: A priority for patient safety" with the slogan "Safe health workers: safe patients" and calling for action to "Speak up for health worker safety!"
The annual event held on the 17th of September each year aims to raise awareness about health care safety & advance important discussions, locally & globally, in a bid to inspire action to improve the safety of health care systems.
WHO estimates that 134 million adverse events occur annually due to unsafe care in low & middle-income countries' hospitals, resulting in some 2.6m deaths. Additionally, 40% of patients experience harm in primary care settings with an estimated 80% of these being preventable.


Government completes 11 isolation centres

Minister of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services, Monica Mutsvangwa yesterday announced in a post Ad-hoc Inter Ministerial Taskforce on COVID-19 media briefing that Government has completed eleven (11) isolation centres, while others were at various levels of completion.
Minister Mutsvangwa said Government is not leaving anything to chance as it continues to make its isolation centres ready just in case there is a sudden increase in cases.
“In light of these high death numbers, Government will continue to make preparations of our facilities so as to be able to cope with any potential spike in infections.
“Therefore, as of the 13th of September 2020, planned works at 11 isolation centres had been completed with funding from Government and/or well-wishers,” said Minister Mutsvangwa.
The completed isolation centres include a central hospital and district hospitals.
“These include, COVID-19 isolation centres at Wilkins Infectious Diseases Hospital and Parirenyatwa Hospital in Harare Metropolitan Province; Victoria Falls Beat Aids (Matabeleland North), Rujeko Clinic and Mashava Gaths Mine Hospital (Masvingo Province), Beitbridge and Plumtree District Hospitals (Matabeleland South Province), Chinengundu Clinic (Mashonaland West Province) and Chipadze Training Center and Guruve District Hospital in Mashonaland Central Province. Outstanding works at other Isolation Centres are at various levels of completion,” said the Minister of Information.
As of 14 September 2020, Zimbabwe had 7 531 confirmed cases, including 5 690 recoveries and 224 deaths. The most affected Provinces are the Metropolitan Provinces of Harare and Bulawayo.


Dr Mangwiro calls for raising prostate cancer awareness

Deputy Minister of Health and Child Care, Dr John Mangwiro during a prostate cancer webinar held last Friday under the theme “Prostate Cancer in the shadow of Covid-19” called for raising awareness among men about the devastating effects of that type of cancer. The webinar was organised by Talk Cancer Zimbabwe led by its president, Michelle Madzudzo.
“Awareness I think is the most important thing, I was reflecting on COVID-19 pandemic which has led many people to now que up in laboratories and hospitals to have COVID-19 PCR tests done, we should come to an extend where we will be saying men are queued up somewhere to get themselves screened for prostrate cancer . So I think where we miss it is in the awareness,” said Dr Mangwiro.
The Deputy Minister of Health said some men come for treatment when it is too late. In this regard he urged the organisers of this webinar to intensify awareness to the public so they adopt health seeking behaviours. There are men out there who need to be told about the dangers and complications this disease , and what can be done for them if they present themselves early.
“I think it’s very important that the group of Dr Chiripanyanga, Michelle Madzudzo and others up it’s claim of awareness. Talk to people all over again and again because people only start to come in when they have backaches and unable to pass urine, most of the time we say it’s too late,” said the Deputy Minister of Health.
Dr Mangwiro urged Madzudzo and others to take the prostate cancer to Parliament so that the lawmakers also know about this disease and make it a catalyst towards setting up of a cancer fund.
“Take this even to Parliament so that Parliamentarians are aware of what is happening, this will help to make our life easy when we want to set up a fund to assist those who have been affected by the disease,” said Dr Mangwiro.
Turning to research on cancers, Dr Mangwiro revealed that a deliberate effort will be pushed to encourage more research into that area at national level.
“We are going to deliberately push people to do a lot of research about it, yes we have got a lot of good literature on it, but we deliberately need to make sure we entice the young doctors and other people who are interested in cancers to take this up at national level,” concluded Dr Mangwiro.
Other speakers at the webinar were Dr Danso (Urologist), Dr Albert Nyamhunga (Oncologist), Dr Josephat Chiripanyanga (Physician), Mr Friday Chisanyu (traditional healer) and Talk Cancer Zimbabwe vice president, Mr Madzudzo.


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