FOURTY (40) nurses have been placed on quarantine at Parirenyatwa Group of Hospitals in Harare after exposure to a Covid-19 patient.
The patient was admitted as a malaria patient but tests later revealed that he had contracted coronavirus.
In a letter addressed to the Health Service Board, the Zimbabwe Health Apex Council blamed shortages of personal protective equipment (PPEs) in most hospitals for the exposure of health workers.
“The PPEs that are currently being provided are inadequate to give necessary protection to employees.
“For example, health workers are not wearing N95 respirator masks, but instead are being provided with surgical masks.
“Not only this, instead of wearing a gown, but they are also provided with plastic aprons which are totally incapable of offering any protection against Covid-19,” said the health care body.
It added: “Currently, we have an approximate number of 40 nurses who had to undergo quarantine after it was deemed they had been in contact with a Covid-19 patient at Parirenyatwa.”
The revelations come following a recent spike in cases of malaria across the country, which health care authorities say were not unusual.
As of 11 May 2020, the Ministry of Health and Child Care advised that Zimbabwe had recorded 37 Covi-19 cases. These include 12 recoveries and 4 deaths.