March 18, 2020

Zimbabwe Red Cross Society health outreach launched

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Mirirai Nsingo

THE Zimbabwe Red Cross Society says its health outreach programme, which recently saw them offer free general practitioner consulting, breast cancer and cervical cancer screening, HIV testing and counselling, radiology, X-Ray services in Harare’s Glen View 3 suburb, is not a one off event.

To mark International Women’s Day, the ZRCS brought health services to the door steps of residents who are struggling to keep up with the rising costs of medical care.

“They are angels sent by God,” said 32-year old Chipo Mariyapera who was among the estimated 1200 residents who benefitted.

 “Accessing healthcare has become expensive. I cannot even afford to go to the local clinic because of the RTGS100 that is needed upfront. I have not been well since last year and have just been using home remedies and herbs.

“So you can imagine my excitement when I heard about this free programme, which has turned out to be a miracle. I managed to consult a doctor, got free X-ray as well as all medicines that were prescribed all for free,” added Mariyapera.

ZRCS said the outreach was their way of celebrating women on IWD although they also decided to make the outreach open to men and children.

 “We are offering free medical services as part of International Women’s Day commemorations. We are offering a wide range of services from general practitioners consultation to specialist care.

“We managed to assist close to 1 200 people as the demand for services has been overwhelming,” said Joel Tapi who was leading a team of medical practitioners from Red Cross Clinic.

ZRCS secretary-general Maxwell Phiri added the free medical outreach was part of his organisation’s mandate of augmenting Government’s efforts.

“We are an arm of the government enacted through an Act of Parliament and as such we are here to augment Government’s efforts, in this case of addressing the access to health care services challenge.

“This is our maiden outreach and we expect it to cascade this to other residential areas and then also decentralise to other provinces. It’s not a one off thing,” said Phiri.

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