FULL TEXT: Govt Ordered To Provide Medical Practitioners With Protective Equipment

High Court of Zimbabwe on Tuesday ordered the Minister of Health and Child Care Obadiah Moyo to provide all health professionals working in public health institutions with adequate personal protection equipment (PPE), screen and test health workers for COVID-19.

The court also ordered the Health Minister to conduct mass screening for COVID-19 including door to door tests and other things.

Below is the order issued by the Honourable Mr Justice Musakwa and the Honourable Mr Justice Tagu:

IT IS ORDERED BY CONSENT THAT:

For the duration of the Public Health (COVID-19 Prevention, Containment and Treatment) (National Lockdown) Order, Statutory Instrument 83 of 2020 or the extended period thereof

1. The 1st respondent [Minister of Health and Child Care] shall ensure that adequate measures are put in place to prevent, contain and treat the incidence of COVID-19, and in particular ensure, within the limit of resources, that:

a. Appropriately equipped quarantine and isolation facilities are established in all provinces, district hospitals and at the designated airports and ports of entry.

b. All frontline health practitioners working at public health facilities in the country or deployed to trace contacts exposed by infected people are provided with adequate Personal Protection Equipment (PPE).

c. Sufficient testing kits are deployed at all designated public hospitals, airports and ports of entry.

d. Extensive screening and testing be carried out, including mobile or door-to-door testing in order to account for asymptomatic carriers.

e. All health practitioners and personnel at the frontline be regularly screened and tested of the COVID-19 virus.

f. All health facilities are equipped with enough supportive medication for both frontline practitioners and patients.

g. More laboratories equipped to test highly infectious diseases such as COVI-19 be established in every province to increase the turnaround time for tests to be conducted.

h. Personnel responding to the COVID-19 pandemic including drivers and their assistants, security personnel, and essential services employees are regularly screened, and tested.

i. Authorised ZUPCO buses, omnibuses and other passenger service vehicles operated by or on behalf of the Public Service Association, the Police Service, the Defence Forces and the Civil Protection Authorities, and commuter omnibuses and other passenger service vehicles operated or chartered by local authorities for the carriage of staff for essential services, the carriage of sick persons to hospitals and other health care are disinfected upon arrival and departure at each destination.

j. Frontline health practitioners are adequately trained on how to handle COVID-19 and protect themselves from the risk of contamination.

k. Clear guidelines are provided to the public on the implementation of the social distance principle, especially in crowded suburbs.

2. There shall be no order as to costs.

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