The Africa Development Bank (AfDB) and the Government of India have donated 20 ambulances and medical equipment worth US$15m to Zimbabwe, a move which will help strengthen the country’s health system.
The gesture will also enable Zimbabwe to effectively respond to the Covid-19 pandemic.
AfDB country manager ,Moono Mupotola, who spoke at the handover ceremony in the capital said the support was part of the Covid-19 crisis response financing to regional member countries to address the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“The bank is supporting the implementation of a three -year (2020-2022) Covid-Response Project in Zimbabwe (CRP). The total cost of the project is US$15m wholly financed from the ADF Transition Support Facility. The project was approved in May 2020 and it is expected to close on December 31 2022,” Mupotola said.
She added: “The project aims to contribute to limiting the morbidity and mortality rates related to Covid-19 in Zimbabwe though the strengthening of the health system to effectively respond to the Covid pandemic. The project area covers 15 high-density urban suburbs in Harare and Bulawayo, satellite townships and targeted health facilities across the country.
“The project has three components which are Covid-19 Case Management Support implemented by the World Health Organisation (WHO), COVID-19 Handwashing Facilities implemented by UNICEF and Project Management and Implementation Support.”
Speaking at the same event, Vice President Constantino Chiwenga, who is also the Minister of Health and Child Care urged the Zimbabwe National Road Administration (ZINARA), and the Insurance and Pensions Commission (IPEC) and medical insurance companies to also play a part in improving the country’s health care system.
“My ministry requests ZINARA to consider donating ambulances as a plough back gesture to our motorists, passengers and other road users who may require medical attention.
“IPEC controls all operations of insurance companies, some of which are mandated to levy third party vehicle insurance schemes on all serviceable vehicles in Zimbabwe. I request you to consider lending a hand for the purposes of ramping up our emergency response capacity,” he said.