The Harare City Council has approved a Memorandum of Understanding between Belvedere Medical Centre and the City Health Department for the setting up of a medical tourism facility specialising in organ transplants and other advanced medical procedures.
The MoU will also entail the completion of Wilkins Hospital wards. The MoU precedes an agreement to be negotiated and brought to council for approval.
“Council notes that the envisaged project will assist by providing health care services that are currently not available in the country and would promote medical tourism.
“The committee noted that the Belvedere Medical Centre has shown interest in developing the site into a centre of medical excellence capable of performing advanced surgical and medical procedures that are currently not available in the country like organ transplants, cardiac catheterisation and other tertiary services,” said the City Council.
African Century has expressed interest in funding the project. The Ministry of Health and Child Care has lent its support to the project and when fully functional the project would be used in promoting medical tourism to earn the country foreign currency.
The city council had been looking for partners and is keen on various funding models including partnerships , built operate transfer (BOTs), rental, lease and among others.
The project was marketed through the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF), Zimbabwe Agricultural Show, council’s website and the city health department’s project prospectus.
The health services department, headed by Dr Prosper Chonzi, is charged with the responsibility of providing primary health care services to residents of Harare and ensuring the general health of residents.
The department’s growth or formation is traceable to 1915 when it was known as the Sanitary Department with a thrust on control of flies and mosquitoes.