By NQOBANI NDLOVU
BULAWAYO City Council says it requires nearly $100 million to fully refurbish Thorngrove Infectious Hospital to turn it into a modern health facility.
The institution was named as one of the city’s COVID-19 isolation centres, but funding to ensure it meets the needs of patients diagnosed of the global pandemic has been coming in dribs and drabs.
The institution was built in 1940.
Council’s latest health, housing and education committee report shows that the institution has undergone 37% refurbishment since April, with nearly $100 million required to finish the whole project.
“The hospital built in the 1940s had been the council’s plan for refurbishment since 2007. Refurbishments began on April 22, 2020 with government funding spurred by COVID-19 pandemic. The main isolation ward was now 97% complete,” the report read.
“A total of $39 million had been committed with an expenditure of $33 million disbursed. About $95 million was required to complete the upgrade as had always been desired by council only 37%was achieved in overall refurbishment.”
Council is proposing a $2 billion budget with part of it earmarked at capacitating its clinics dotted around the city.
Residents have been turning to council clinics for health services as they run away from privately-run facilities which cost an arm and a leg for the same service.