MATER Dei Hospital in Bulawayo has opened a recovery ward for elderly patients who are unable to take care of themselves after being discharged from the hospital.

Mater Dei Hospital Trust chairperson, Raymond Smithwick told source that they came up with the programme through assistance from well-wishers who contributed funds towards construction of the ward.

“Our desire was to give back to the Bulawayo community, which was so generous with donations that enabled the hospital to construct a COVID-19 intensive care unit (ICU) at the beginning of the pandemic,” Smithwick said. “The ward will be taking in patients from August this month. This is a long-term project and there is no end date, it will be open as long as the community needs it,” he said.

Smithwick said the patients would be asked to pay a fee, but it would be low compared to normal hospital admission charges.

He said the facility would be occupied mostly by the elderly, because after getting discharged from hospitals they usually do not have people to nurse them at home.

“This facility will provide that care and ease the burden for the family. There would be no restrictions; we will be taking in any patient suffering from any type of illness.”

According to a Mater Dei poster, the hospital will be offering medical and nursing care, general healthcare such as administering medication, emotional assistance and monitoring of the patients, and care for patients discharged from the hospital but are not sure that they will receive sufficient care at home.