By Kudakwashe Pembere
Originally from USA, a non-profit organisation which set base in Zimbabwe last year in September called Aids Healthcare Foundation has put over 16 000 Zimbabweans on free antiretroviral treatment. The organisation built centres of excellence which are treatment facilities for those with the disease at Parirenyatwa Hospital in Harare and Mpilo Hospital in Bulawayo.
Speaking to the press last Friday, AHF Zimbabwe Monitoring and Evaluation manager Brighton Murimira said there are about 16 000 people on free ART at their centres.
“At Parirenyatwa we have 4 000 people and at Mplio hospital there are about 11 000 people. This adds up to 15 000 under AHF Zimbabwe on free treatment,” he said.
AHF Zimbabwe manager Dr Enerst Chikwati said centres of excellence have breathed life to many with the diseases as they get free state of the art treatment.
“At the centres, we replaced wooden benches with airport benches so that waiting to be served becomes worthwhile. With this and other refurbishments we have done, nurses working there say this has made their working enjoyable as opposed to the previous environment,” he said.
The centres of excellence have specialist doctors.
Dr Chikati noted that they will add more of these centres of excellence in the country after the Ministry of Health and Childcare identifies a hospital for them.
He said there will be satellite CoE to compliment the main ones.
AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) is a Los Angeles-based global nonprofit provider of HIV prevention services, testing, and healthcare for HIV patients. AHF currently claims to provide medical care and services to more than 820 000 individuals in 15 U.S. states and 36 countries worldwide.