The Association of Healthcare Funders of Zimbabwe (AHFoZ) chairperson Stanford Sisiya has castigated the level of effort that is being done to attend to emergencies in the medical sector adding that people are dying everyday as a result of failure to access the US priced medical supplies.
Sisiya said this during an AHFoZ oral presentation in parliament yesterday.
He also spoke about Medical Aid Societies in Zimbabwe that are accepting Rtgs$ but it is inconsistent with the suppliers making it difficult to continue delivering services to the people.
“Right now we have one company supplying oxygen in hospitals. Hospitals are being charged for the cans that hold oxygen now and the prices have gone up generally to the extend that most people can no longer afford oxygen,” said Sisiya.
“We have noticed an upsurge in terms of inflation since October 2018. As healthcare funders, what we have faced is a issue where we have lost what was in our reserves that we build over the past few years since dollarization. So in terms of our statutory requirements, you will find that we are having challenges now in terms of having those reserves. And it affects the climate payment cycle,” added Sisiya.
Sisiya added that the US dollar pricings are affecting the pharmaceutical sector and hospitals.
“Right now the challenge we face is that our members are not being paid in US dollars and their salaries are not tracking the US Dollar. It’s quite unfortunate that we have got a situation where it seems everyone is talking about the rate,”
“So in terms of the functional currency, as AHFoZ we believe we should have one. Medical Aid Societies continue to do business in RTGS$ as their members are not earning US dollars. This has caused a huge mismatch between what funders are paying out and what the service providers are charging. The result of which is a dilemma to the patient,” said Sisiya.
“This is how this has affected us. It’s like a state funded genocide. We are actually killing our citizens through monetary and fiscal policies. Is there such a research maybe through the University of Zimbabwe (UZ) or National University of Science and Technology (NUST) because we could use that to have a compelling argument against the Minister of Finance and others to say you are actually killing citizens?” Sisiya added.
Member of Parliament for Matabeleland North, Ruth Labode, the current Parliamentary Portfolio Committee Chairwoman on Health and Child Care encouraged AHFoZ to try to use Rwanda’s framework on Health Insurance so that they pluck a leaf from a successful framework based on evidence and results.