One of Zimbabwe’s medical aid providers, Cimas Medical Aid Society, has partnered with business associations to procure Sinovac Covid-19 vaccines for its members who will be vaccinated for free.
As of April 30, 2021, the Ministry of Health and Child Care said 85 607 people have been fully vaccinated, after receiving both jabs while 414 735 have received their first vaccine doses.
In mobilising resources to purchase the vaccines, Cimas which has been in existence in the country for over 75 years, joined hands with the Zimbabwe Chamber of Mines, Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries, Business Fighting Covid, Employers’ Confederation of Zimbabwe (EMCOZ), Horticultural Development Council, Insurance Council of Zimbabwe, Bankers’ Association of Zimbabwe, Association of Trust Schools, Tourism Business Council of Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe Association of Dairy Farmers and the Zimbabwe National Chamber of Commerce.
The vaccines were procured through the government while these organisations footed the bill for costs incurred.
“We have partnered with like-minded business management organisations to fulfil our mandate, which is to inspire healthier communities by providing global standard health and wellness solutions. Offering free and accessible Covid-19 vaccines to our members is one such drive to ensure our members are protected from dire effects of the pandemic,” said Cimas Chief Executive Officer, Vuli Ndlovu.
Ndlovu said purchasing the vaccines was a way for the private sector to actively contribute in the campaign to have the population vaccinated.
“The Covid-19 vaccine partnership will see Cimas members and those of its business management partners accessing the Sinovac vaccine for free at Cimas’ and other approved facilities,” he said.
Vaccination has already started at Cimas’ and approved participating organisations’ vaccination centres across the country, with more centres due to open once the vaccines have been delivered to those districts.
“As an organisation, we are aware of the challenges that have been associated with the Covid-19 vaccine uptake. We believe vaccination is the way to go to fight this Covid-19 war. For this reason, we have been busy with public service announcements and infomercials on radio and social media correcting misinformation, demystifying myths and misconceptions about the vaccine and informing the public about the benefits of the Covid-19 vaccine,” Ndlovu said.
“We continue to advise members, and the public, who may be sceptical about the availed vaccines, that with the supply of vaccines currently strained, the best vaccine is the one on your arm. All vaccines have been proved to significantly reduce mortality and need for critical care.
The Cimas CEO said the medical aid society, in line with its purpose, was working tirelessly to invest in the health and wellness of the communities they served.
“We have been doing this by coming up with innovative health and medical care solutions that always exceed our customer expectations and investing in health infrastructure such as primary care clinics, emergency evacuation, and diagnostic services, among others. Given the impact of Covid-19 in Zimbabwe and the world at large, we have seen it fit to also invest in vaccines,” he said.
“We at Cimas would like to encourage our members and the general public to take up the vaccines to protect themselves and their loved ones. We urge those already vaccinated not to relax but to continue adhering to the Covid-19 regulations such as sanitising their hands, social distancing and the proper wearing of face masks.”