Mater Dei partners with US hospital


THE Roman Catholic Church-run Mater Dei Hospital in Bulawayo has partnered with a United States-based hospital to train medical staff as the health facility moves to improve its services.

Report by Pamela Mhlanga

Mater Dei Hospital administrator Sister Maureen Jamieson told Southern Eye the hospital had partnered with the Catholic-run St Francis Hospital from Columbus, Georgia, early this year.

“We are very pleased to have a close sister relationship with St Francis Hospital which was formed by a group of religious catholic nuns in 1950 in US,” she said.

“The doctors and nurses from St Francis have come here to Mater Dei in an effort to share and exchange ideas with our own medical staff, including equipping them with some important medical skills through trainings.”

She said St Francis was a big hospital that had 376 beds and started operating in 1950, three years before Mater Dei Hospital started operating.
“This sister relationship we have with the US hospital is meant for the medical staff from each hospital to learn from one another’s way of practicing medicine,” Jamieson said.

“Three doctors and one nurse from St Francis came in May and lectured our staff and also taught a number of skills. It was fantastic.”

She said the two doctors from St Francis included an orthopaedic surgeon, a general surgeon who was skilled in wound care and eye care and a trauma-trained nurse who taught nurses at Mater Dei how to handle traumatised patients.

She said the medical team from St Francis possessed a lot of information which they imparted to Mater Dei through the training using DVDs and other media.

Mater Dei Hospital accountant Ethabert Ponalo said their medical team had the privilege to share information about their own practice to the St Francis team.

“The Mater Dei doctors were very pleased with the skills. There was no money exchanged. It was all for free,” Ponalo said. “Another medical team from St Francis will come in August and probably another one in October.”