BCC identifies three clinics to offer dental services

Bulawayo City Council (BCC) has earmarked three local clinics to render dental services to residents. 

Director of Health Services, Dr Edwin Sibanda-Mzingwane, said Nkulumane, eMakhandeni and Entumbane had been identified to provide dental services. 

“A request had been made to Human Capital Department for the recruitment of dental staff.3 Clinics ie Emakhandeni, Nkulumane and Pelandaba had been earmarked for dental service delivery. Considerations would be done to include Entumbane Clinic. The plan for Emganwini Clinic would be a replica of the Nkulumane clinic with maternity and dental patients in Council Clinics were treated the same,” the minutes read. 

Dr Sibanda further explained that a challenge that was being faced by Council health department was that of staff turnover as most council staff were leaving for greener pastures.

“Dr Sibanda responded to various concerns and explained that Zimbabwe nurse training standards matched with training in the United Kingdom. After the massive staff turnover in the UK to other European Countries a gap was created. The UK then started recruiting nursing staff from Zimbabwe. This created a national crisis. There was a need for a National strategy to deal with this issue of brain drain,” the minutes read. 

Chairperson of the Health, Housing and Education Committee, Cllr Sinikiwe Mutanda, advised council to consider services already being provided at the earmarked clinics so as not to overwhelm the staff.

“The Chairperson (Councillor S. Mutanda) enquired about the decentralisation of the dental services to other clinics. In her view, it was not prudent to have this service at Nkulumane Clinic which had a bundle of Services,” the minutes read. 

In response to the issue of the high rate of staff turnover, Aldermen Siboniso Khumalo said it was a national crisis and it was important to lobby Parliament to address the matter.

“Aldermen S. Khumalo concurred. The high staff turnover was not only in the Health Services but in Council general because of poor salaries and poor working conditions. In the yesteryears, Councils received grants from Central Government to assist in the payment of salaries for the nursing staff. He suggested that local members of parliament be lobbied to take the issue of nurses to parliament,” the minutes read.

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