GOVERNMENT and private health institutions owe the National Blood Service Zimbabwe (NBSZ) more than $2 million as at December 2016 and the non-profit organisation is struggling to carry out its day-to-day activities, a new report has revealed.
BY MTHANDAZO NYONI
NBSZ in its 2016 annual report confirmed that the debt had hamstrung its programmes.
“The operating revenue decreased by 5,5%, from $7,82 million in 2015 to $7,39 million in 2016,” the report reads.
“Donations accounted for 7% of revenue in 2016 as compared to 12% in the prior year.
“The service recorded a surplus of $621 444, which showed a decrease of 44% compared to last year.
“The decrease was mainly due to funding constraints and reduction of fees for blood products to improve affordability by patients.
“The service is owed $2 016 474 by the government and private health institutions.”
NBSZ board chairman, Leslie Smith said, in 2016, they collected 64 890 units of blood against a target of 65 000.
“This was achieved after taking into consideration the prevailing adverse economy, which resulted in decreased demand for blood products from the hospitals,” he said.
Smith said 68% of the donations were from repeat donors, while new donors constituted the remainder.
Males made up 60% of the donations and females comprised 40%, a similar pattern to 2015.
Despite the challenging business environment, Smith said they remained optimistic that streamlining costs structures and increasing distribution of blood and blood products would continue to sustain the organisation in future.
Smith said the work that was done during the service’s operations and cost structure had created a solid base for positive performance.
“However, internally-generated revenue is not adequate to cover all operational costs, hence, donor funding is critical for the service,” he said.