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Bulawayo to open call centre

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The Bulawayo City Council says it will this month end commission its first-ever state-of-the-art call centre to enable residents to report any emergencies for free and provide feedback on service delivery issues.

By Our Staff Reporter

Presenting the council’s 2012 annual review statement last Friday, Bulawayo mayor Thaba Moyo said the call centre, the first of its kind in the country, would be officially opened end of this month.

“The call centre is for the benefit of residents so that they are able to report any emergencies faster without having to come to our offices,” he said.

“When these emergencies are reported in the shortest possible time, we, as council will be able to respond to issues faster.”

Moyo added that the call centre was a centralised and formal system for customer complaints and feedback.

“The main aim of the call centre is to improve response times in dealing with issues.”

Meanwhile, Moyo said Tuberculosis (TB) remained a public health challenge for Bulawayo, with a 10% death rate due to the disease being recorded this year.

“TB has remained one of the major challenges being faced by the city,” he said.

“To date, we have had an 87% treatment rate with a 2% defaulter rate due to late commencement of treatment by patients.

“We have also had a 10% death rate due to late presentation of antiretroviral therapy (ART), especially for people with both TB and HIV.”

Moyo said a total of 11 700 TB patients tested for HIV and 1 397, which is about 79% of the total, were HIV-positive.

The local authority revealed that the prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) programme was going on well at council clinics.

“The PMTCT programme is on-going at all council clinics. To date there were 8 389 mothers who tested for HIV out of 8 639 who were booked at the clinics,” revealed council in the annual report.

“A total of 1 076 were HIV-positive, giving a positivity rate of 13%. ART is commenced at 14 weeks of pregnancy for expecting mothers. We have also recorded a total of 23 008 people on ART to date.”

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