INFORMATION Publicity and Broadcasting Services permanent secretary Nick Mangwana, has stirred a hornet’s nest following his remarks that deviant doctors could be behind the death of Zimbabwe’s politicians.
By Michael Gwarisa
Early in the morning, Mangwana took to his micro-blogging site to vent over the continued demise of top politicians and blamed some doctors for inducing the deaths while hiding behind medical qualifications. The allegations did not go down well with doctors who believe Mangwana’s remarks were an attack and victimisation of the medical profession.
In an interview with HealthTimes, Senior Hospital Doctors Association (SHDA) president, Dr Shingai Nyaguse said the statement was unfortunate and uncalled for.
It’s an unfortunate sentiment and statement. Once patients develop severe covid, mortality rates are high worldwide. We continue to urge Zimbabweans to adhere to preventive measures, especially if they have underlying disease,” said Dr Nyaguse.
The Zimbabwe Association of Doctors for Human Rights (ZADHR) also issued a statement to that effect and castigated Mangwana for being reckless.
“The ZADHR has noted with concern the escalating tensions in the health sector. Of key concern are the following recent issues The branding of certain medical professionals as “medical assassins” by a senior government official. The threats of arrests, and deregistration of medical practitioners who are alleged to have communicated unethical statements on social media.
“ZADHR strongly advises against continuous persecution of health care professionals. Cases of alleged medical misconduct, if any,must always be handled by the appropriate medical regulatory bodies. Across the globe, self-regulation of medical practitioners has been adopted as the standard approach for ensuring adherence to the highest standards of ethical practice in the medical sector.
“Furthermore, we advise that the continuous persecution of medical practitioners is likely to destabilise the health sector during this time when the nation is supposed to be focusing on resolving the COVID-19 crisis.Government must be seen to be applauding the positive role being played by frontline health workers who are working tirelessly to provide essential services during this pandemic, risking their lives to save Zimbabweans in the process. The COVID-19 crisis requires close collaboration between government, health workers and all citizens,” said ZADHR.
Meanwhile, Zimbabwe has lost close to 1000 citizens to to COVID-19 and amongst the deceased are top politicians which include General Perrence Shiri, foreign affairs minister Sibusiso Moyo, Manicaland provincial minister Ellen Gwaradzimba among others.