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Muzarabani Healthcare Facilities Resort To Barter Trade As Patients Fail To Pay

Muzarabani Healthcare Facilities Resort To Barter Trade As Patients Fail To Pay

Healthcare facilities in Muzarabani have turned to the age-old barter trade as a measure for the villagers who are unable to pay for health care.

While it is government policy to provide free maternal health services, most public health facilities across the country are charging a “nominal fee” to keep them going.

Although historically barter trade was common among villagers, it was unusual for government services to be paid with grain, chickens or goats, among others.

A villager told NewsDay Zimbabwe that most of the villagers do not have money. Said the villager:

Some of us don’t have the money that the clinic might require, so they ask us to bring grain in order to get medical assistance.

I think that way, it makes medical services affordable for most of us because in these communities, the currencies in circulation are the United States dollars and the Mozambican metical.

Chiwenga ward is on the fringes of Zimbabwe’s border with Mozambique and the clinic also serves a number of patients from across Tete province in the neighbouring country.

According to a poster on the walls of the clinic, one can get medical assistance after parting away with a gallon of sorghum/millet or two gallons of maize.

The clinic’s sister-in-charge Vimbai Muguti confirmed to NewsDay that they were bartering because most villagers were struggling to get cash. She said:

We collect the grain and resell it in bulk. The money is used for the day-to-day running of the clinic.

Chiwenga health centre committee chairperson Israel Mutombo said the idea of bartering was meant to cushion both sides — the patient and the health centre.

Muzarabani North legislator Zhemu Soda (ZANU PF) said efforts were being made to decongest the health centres by setting up health posts across all wards.

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5 Comments

dhuterere 2 months ago

The epitome of failure


User 2 months ago

2023 lizabakwazi ukuvota ,uzathi ugula uyethwala amabele futhi hay sekwanele


Doug 2 months ago

I can imagine the day a wealthy person will fall sick in the area, and, after paying with a gold coin being given change in the form of chicken, eggs, ducks, goats, rapoko, millet, masau, etc, etc!


Fortune Muchuchuti 2 months ago

You have totally missed the point by miles. May you re-read the story.

cnm 2 months ago

kkkk and you can also pay in kind


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