India has pledged to provide cash to upgrade Zimbabwe’s public hospitals and build two hospital complexes and supply them with medical equipment.
“We need to improve medical tourism, India is a leading country now as far as medical expertise and medical facilities that are affordable to patients, and that is why a number of patients are going to India for treatment,” National Assembly Speaker Jacob Mudenda told journalists after a courtesy call from Indian Ambassador to Zimbabwe Rungsung Masakui.
“The ambassador is in agreement that instead of having patients going to India, the process has begun to identify one or two hospitals to upgrade them and bring in the Indian model of care, with a team of doctors initially and thereafter the local doctors will take over and implement that model that is affordable not only to the people of Zimbabwe but Sadc, so that Zimbabwe becomes a centre of medical excellence.
“There is a proposal for two memorial hospitals dedicated to veterans of the liberation struggle. One is being proposed to be constructed in Victoria Falls and another one here in Harare . . . the preliminary investigation into this is underway, and these will be important landmarks.”
The Indian envoy said there were three Indian hospital groups that were scouting for opportunities to construct other hospitals in Zimbabwe.
“One of them is the NH Group, and the other one is Fortis and the other is Savitri. The NH has just come in and did scoping activity.
“I am told that they are coming in March to take the step forward, and the others are in talks with stakeholders here.
“It’s up to the government of Zimbabwe and the ministry to engage in any one of them,” Masakui said.
Meanwhile, the ambassador said he was happy that Mudenda had clarified government’s position on the Indian community and businesses after Zanu PF legislator for Harare South, Shadrek Mashayamombe, had called for all Indian nationals to be expelled from Zimbabwe
“I am also happy that the honourable speaker has assured that the statement that came out in the press against Indian businesses was not the policy of the government and I want to thank the speaker for making that assurance and clarification,” Masakui said.