By Vongai Chinjeke
So far 88 retired nurses have been recruited by the Health Services Board as it works to increase the public sector health care workforce in response to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The recruitment of nurses began last year when the Government called for retired health professionals interested in rejoining the public health sector to register for placement.
The Covid-19 pandemic has put pressure on the health system which is already understaffed as more nurses were needed to care for patients and attend to the vaccination programme.
HSB spokesperson Ms Tryfine Dzukutu said the board was still taking applications from retired nurses.
“Government placed an advert on the recruitment of retired nurses to help increase the vaccination teams and accelerate vaccine rollout,” she said.
“So far, 88 retired nurses have been recruited, but we are still taking more and retired nurses who may be interested should come forward.”
Ms Dzukutu encouraged more nurses to respond to the call and assist in accelerating the pace of the vaccination programme.
In August, HSB chairman Dr Paulinus Sikhosana said the board had a database of registered retired nurses which were being targeted for the recruitment exercise.
He said the nurses, most of whom are above 65 years, would be stationed at vaccination points.
Although the pace of the vaccination programme has slowed down, the country is still expecting to inoculate 10 million people by year end.
With the decision to start vaccinating the 16-17 years age group, vaccination teams might become overwhelmed again as numbers start increasing. The Herald