Government has warned unregistered health institutions testing for Covid-19 and operating unapproved isolation centres to stop the practice and follow laid down procedures in line with provisions of the Public Health Act.
Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health and Child Care, Dr Agnes Mahomva, said some private health institutions had already declared themselves Covid-19 testing and isolation centres without approval from the Ministry of Health. She advised such institutions to follow the process of approval first.
“The Ministry has learned and noticed that some private facilities that have not been officially assessed and registered are springing up as ‘Covid-19 clinics’.
These facilities are operating illegally, are a danger to the Covid-19 patients and communities around them and should stop operating with immediate effect until they have completed all registration processes,” said Dr Mahomva.
The Permanent Secretary noted that Public Health Teams from her Ministry currently on the ground enforcing compliance.
“Our Public Health Teams are in the process of visiting such facilities and others for compliance checks and action accordingly,” said the Permanent Secretary.
“Since Covid-19 is an infectious disease that was declared a formidable epidemic disease that was declared a formidable epidemic disease, any private facility intending to manage Covid-19 disease (including testing, isolation and treatment) should duly apply to the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health and Child Care for assessment, approval and registration in line with the Public Health Act,” said Dr Mahomva.
Prior to this, some unscrupulous health institutions were taking advantage of the situation to capitalise on the pandemic creating unfit Covid-19 centres. The Ministry of Health and Child Care welcomes offers by several private institutions to support the management of Covid-19 cases.
Approved private hospitals for Covid-19 testing and as isolation centres to date are St Annes Hospital, Arundel Hospital and Milton Park Covid-19 Clinic all in Harare as well as Ekusileni Medical Centre in Bulawayo.