Zimbabwe’s life expectancy which has over the years stood at 37 years has shot up to 59, an indication of improvement in the country’s health delivery system, Health and Child Care Minister, Dr David Parirenyatwa has said.
In a video recording, posted on the Ministry of Health and Child Care Twitter account, Parirenyatwa said the rise in life expectancy age, drop in infant mortality rate and HIV prevalence in Zimbabwe is a sign that the country’s health system is slowly improving and getting better.
“When you really want to see the markers of an improving system you look at life expectancy, infant mortality and HIV prevalence,
“The life expectancy had fallen to 37 years, now its at 59 years; still low but it has shot up that is a good mark because it is no longer going down but up,
“You also look at infant mortality rate, how many children are dying around child birth and that has come down drastically, you also look at the maternal mortality rate, how many mothers are dying during child birth; at one time it used to be 1100 per 100 000 mothers but has gone down to 614,” said Parirenyatwa.
He added that HIV prevalence which is also a great indicator of an improving health system has shown that Zimbabwe now has one of the highest drop in the region.
“In this country we had one of the highest HIV prevalence rate in the region, now we worked so hard that we now have the highest drop of the prevalence in the region to the extent that people actually come here to learn how we did it and my mantra has always been prevention and prevention,
“This has been copied by the region and now am being invited all over the world to talk about prevention and these are the things that people do not see that Zimbabwe is seen as a beacon country in fighting HIV,
“So now we don’t measure the prevalence but the number of new infections that we are getting and that has dropped as well drastically including the mother to child transmission that has dropped from 70% to 5.4% because of the treatment we give and to me that is a big marker of an improving Health system,” added Parirenyatwa.
He further emphasized that as part of what is being said all these factors should be looked into as markers of a health system that is improving.