Gweru hospital turns away poor patient

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HARARE – Gweru General Hospital allegedly turned away a patient who needed emergency care because he had no cash.

The Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa said the hospital refused to treat a poor patient who had no cash but was willing to pay through Ecocash.

Efforts to obtain comment from the hospital were futile.

Providing affordable, accessible healthcare is one of the key platforms of President Robert Mugabe’s government. But hospitals are often underfunded and overcrowded, and access to care remains a pervasive problem for the poor.

“A patient admitted at Gweru General Hospital on October 26, 2017 was not attended to on the basis that he had no means to pay for medical bills. The patient asked to pay through Ecocash but the hospital authorities insisted on cash or swipe,” the Trust said in a statement.

“Despite his worsening condition, he was kept unattended, leading to some members of the public reporting the matter to the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa to sensitise other stakeholders.”

The Trust said “this type of behaviour is not expected at a hospital, a facility which should prioritise human life no matter what circumstances.”

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