Hospitals to pay cash up front for blood

THE National Blood Services of Zimbabwe (NBSZ) is now demanding cash up front from government hospitals for blood because of the health institutions’ failure to pay for supplies on time.

Report by Gamma Mudarikiri

NBSZ public affairs manager Esther Massundah told NewsDay yesterday that as of January, government hospitals owed NBSZ over $1,6 million.
She said the failure by hospitals to pay for blood on time had seriously affected the blood bank’s operations.

The government hospitals constitute 80% of the NBSZ’s clients.

“The situation is so dire and as an organisation we have been forced to demand cash upfront from hospitals for all blood supplies in order to continue with operations,” Massundah said.

But she indicated that some hospitals had submitted payment plans to clear the debt.

Patients who need blood transfusion are now resorting to buying blood directly from NBSZ as most government hospitals are now running out of stocks.

Massundah said NBSZ had engaged the Health and Child Welfare ministry, which understood their plight.

NBSZ supplies blood and blood products to 46 government hospitals, 14 mission hospitals and 35 private hospitals across the country.

In the 2013 Budget, Finance minister Tendai Biti allocated a paltry
$381 million to the Health ministry, which is a far cry from other ministries like Education, Sport, Arts and Culture which received $1 billion.

7 Responses to Hospitals to pay cash up front for blood

  1. Danny Crane February 6, 2013 at 8:11 am #

    Sh****t!! There I was donating blood for free for the good of my fellow citizens but the guys I give my blood to for free get paid for it!!!! Not donating my blood until I get paid too, I work hard to keep this blood healthy!

  2. Simboti February 6, 2013 at 8:35 am #

    I hv always donated blood frm my days in school. I dnt understand however why this blood that we donate for free is sold at such exorbitant prices. I understand that they screen the blood which obviously has some cost to it. And also the transport costs and salaries of the staff. But still the blood cost remains way out of reach for the poor who constitute a great percentage of the blood donors. I have a friend who was in Pari recently and 1 pint of blood was going for $128. He needed 4 pints and ended up affording just 1. Being a blood donor myself it pains me to imagine that the same blood has a price tag to it that the majority of my country men cant afford. Even if I myself were to be in a situation that demands a blood transfusion, I would be at pains to part with so much for blood that we give freely. I realy need a good explanation as to why this blood costs so much

  3. government February 6, 2013 at 10:55 am #

    Simboti, your friend was obviously waylayed by some vulture. Blood for government patients is sold at the cost price at which NBTS supplies hospitals -which is a paltry $65 per pint plus a cross-match fee of just $2 per pint and a fixed cost grouping flat fee of $6 per patient aggregating to $73. private patients and those covered by medical aid buy this blood at $100 plus the cross-match and grouping fees bluh bluh bluh. If you go to a government hospital and try to pretend that you have a lot of money, then indoda iyazibonela. Besides, who did you give the $128? Did you get a receipt for that? Obviously if there was no receipt,then you were corned. Tsvaga mbavha yakakuvhara.

  4. Chauruka February 6, 2013 at 3:00 pm #

    Mismanagement, tingadai tiri kurapwa mahara tichitarisa kuti zimbabwe inezvicherwa zvakavandisa zvikuru, dai indeginisation yakanga ichitarisa utano, dzidzo ne ruvako dai tisikutambura munyika. Vanhu vanofamba ne mota dzemhando yepamusoro apa povo ichitambura. Mismanagement and abuse of power.

    • robert February 6, 2013 at 3:35 pm #

      i think zimbabweans were corrupted by this notion of health for free. this is was not a sustainable policy, and now a lot zimbos are reluctant to pay for services rendered even when they have they can afford. this is why government hospitals are struggling to service debts (coupled to mismanagement, corruption and inadequate financing from treasury!).
      we should consider sustainable health financing such as National Health Insurance.

  5. tsotso February 6, 2013 at 3:54 pm #

    why pay so much for something donated thats daylight robbery

  6. Patrick February 8, 2013 at 6:11 pm #

    Kana iyo mvura inonaya kubva kudenga raMwari tinongoitenga wani?

    The services, are the ones which are catered for by those charged amounts, so keep up the good work of donating blood may that’s why one is still alive!!!

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