Masvingo– As the cases of Covid-19 infections continue to surge in the country, private medical laboratories are reportedly overwhelmed with the high demand for the Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test in the province and this has prompted hefty charging.
Of late, Masvingo district has been declared a Covid-19 hotspot and a demand for the PCR test kit has been on the increase.
Many have struggled to get free Covid-19 tests at public health institutions hence people have resorted to private institutions.
Premier Services Medical Aid Society (PSMAS) are charging US$40 for local PCR Test while Lancet laboratories is charging US$60 for a single test.
Jeremiah Murenjekwa a Mucheke A resident told TellZim News that due to the demand for hard currency by private players , they are struggling to get tested at public health institutions.
“The test kits are very expensive and are being charged in US dollars. Most people can’t afford parting ways with US$40 but you end up forcing yourself to do so because at public institutions it’s very difficult to access a test kit unless you are showing signs or if you have been in contact with a positive case,” said Murenjekwa.
Masvingo Provincial covid-19 taskforce spokesperson, Rodgers Irimayi said the public who can’t afford private institutions should resort to testing at public institutions for free of charge.
“Citizens who want to be tested can approach public institutions for testing free of charge,” said Irimayi.
Covid-19 positive cases have been on the rise in the province, a development which has seen Masvingo and Chiredzi district being declared hotspots.
Tertiary institutions; Masvingo Polytechnic College, Morgenster and Bondolfi Teachers ’ Colleges have been hit by the novel virus in recent days.