Vusumuzi Dube, Senior Reporter

THE Bulawayo City Council’s health services department recently got a boost from  Government after the secondment of 12 nurses from Mpilo Central hospital to the council owned Thorngrove hospital, in a bid to up the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic.

The 12 nurses however, fall short of the 15 that were requested by the local authority at the onset of the pandemic in March.

According to the latest council report, the Ministry of Health and Child Care had since seconded 12 nurses, three cleaners and a food services supervisor.

“The Director of Health Services (Dr Edwin Sibanda) reported that the Health Services Department (HSD) had requested from the Ministry of Health and Child Care assistance in the form of nurses and other staff to alleviate shortage of staff in the many programmes going on to combat Covid-19 spread.

“Following that request, Ministry of Health and Child Care employed nurses under Mpilo Hospital vote for secondment to Thorngrove Infectious Diseases Hospital during the Covid-19 pandemic. All emoluments would be paid by the Ministry of Health and Child Care, whilst Council would be responsible with the day to day supervision of staff members,” reads the report.

Last year the local authority reported that they were considering approaching the Government to get a fresh mandate to employ more nurses with reports that the establishment is operating with a shortfall of 134 nurses, a situation that has hampered health delivery in the city.