Story by Abigirl Tembo, Heath Editor
One of the major projects being rolled out by the Second Republic to ensure universal access to quality healthcare, the United Bulawayo Hospitals (UBH) medical laboratory, is nearing completion.
Sitting on almost three thousand square metres, the 52-roomed facility is expected to be the largest laboratory in the country and will eliminate the obtaining situation where some services are being outsourced.
“This is a very massive project which we are doing as an institution. This laboratory is a super laboratory. These are modern types of laboratories. It has got nine departments which basically cover all the areas in best patient investigation,” noted United Bulawayo Hospitals Chief Medical Officer, Dr William Busumani.
“It’s mainly blood works and other samples from a patient so it is going to help us a lot because we were outsourcing most of these services to private players.”
“If a person comes in and gets admitted and then requires a certain lab test, they have to go out, go into town. We wanted something which is a one-stop shop so that all the tests are done here within the institution it’s easy for us it’s easy for the patient and we get results quickly so that we can quickly manage our patients,” he added.
The contractor expressed gratitude to the government for the opportunity to showcase the capabilities of local companies.
“We started in July 2022, it is quite a big project, but so far we are at almost 95% complete in terms of construction,” said the contractor, Dr Joseph Mutiyeni.
“We are supposed to finish by the 30th of June if all things are equal. As local companies, we are also trying to prove that we are also good just like the big international companies.”
“We appreciate the government for giving us this opportunity as they say Nyika Inovakwa Nevene Vayo,” he applauded.
This comes at a time when UBH is conducting its laboratory tests in three rooms where one of the rooms has been divided to run four diagnostic tests, while another one is being used to conduct viral load tests.
Upon completion, the laboratory will house departments such as haematology, biochemistry and immunology among others.
It will also have services such as a blood bank and histology which are currently being outsourced.
Government is on a drive to construct modern health facilities in line with the country’s National Health Strategy which feeds into the country’s vision of an upper-middle-income society by 2030.