While the focus is on saving lives rather than money when it comes to COVID-19 in Zimbabwe, the two are one and the same. Your chances of getting successful treatment depend on how much money and influence you have. To underscore thdis fact, there has been a surge in COVID-19 cases for the past few weeks. Nobody has been talking about that until recently when several prominent people died.
So how much will it cost you to get treated for COVID-19 in Zimbabwe? Well, first of all you have to actually find a hospital that is willing to accept you. Despite being spared from the worst during last year’s first wave the government has done little to improve the country’s preparedness. We are just as unprepared as we were last year. Often when you walk into a hospital be it private or government owned you are asked to undergo the COVID-19 test. You are expected to pay upfront for this. This can be contrasted with other countries where governments are actually doing free tests and providing resources needed.
According to a prominent local doctor if you want proper treatment you have to be willing to pay the following costs:
- Doctors will demand US$250 per visit i.e. consultation if you are suspected of having COVID-19. This includes the cost of PPE and other materials they need to handle your case
- You will need to pay about US$75 for the actual COVI-19 test also known as the PCR test
- Other tests will also need to be carried out resulting in costs that will average about US$400 per day
- The total cost for the estimated 5 days you will need treatment is about US$3 000.00
- In fact, some hospitals are already demanding a deposit of US$5 000.00
All this is assuming you are able to actually get attended to as most hospitals are now full. The few ventilators in this country are now all probably in use.
Prevention is better than cure
At no point has this adage rung true more than during this pandemic. Preventative measure go a long way in terms of reducing chances of contracting COVID-19. Don’t wait for the Zimbabwean government.
- Stay at home
- If possible work from home
- Behave responsibly and stop engaging in risky behaviour, for example, hosting and attending parties
- Wear your mask
- Practice social distancing
- Avoid travelling unnecesarily
- Avoid large gatherings
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