Cimas Medical Aid Society on Friday (10 May) officially opened Manresa Clinic at Lafarge Cement Zimbabwe to cater for factory employees, their families and the surrounding community.
The clinic is the medical aid society’s 12th primary healthcare clinic and the first to be opened in partnership with a company primarily for the benefit of that company’s employees and their families.
In addition to the services offered at other Cimas primary healthcare clinics, the Manresa Clinic provides occupational health services and staff wellness programmes for those working at Lafarge. It also engages in activities to facilitate an emergency response in the event of a health and safety emergency.
Speaking at the official opening ceremony, Cimas board member Bart Mswaka, representing board chairman Luke Ngwerume, said the addition of such Cimas clinics was in line with the society’s goal of providing its members and prospective members with integrated healthcare solutions.
He praised Lafarge Cement Zimbabwe for its initiative in approaching Cimas and going into partnership with it to establish a clinic that responded to the particular needs of Lafarge and its employees.
“Full credit must go to the Lafarge Group, whose brainchild this clinic was. A while ago we were approached by Lafarge to go into this joint venture and the results have been nothing short of amazing,” Mr Mswaka said.
“Further, this clinic spearheaded the introduction of an additional service in occupational health services and employee wellness,” he said.
“Cimas entered into this partnership with Lafarge to provide it with occupational health services, staff wellness promotion and activities in facilitating emergency responses in support of its safety and health policy.
“This is a new service we are offering through our wellness department. We are inviting other corporates to partner with us to ensure their staff are well and productive,” Mr Mswaka said.
Major services provided at Cimas clinics countrywide include doctor and nurse consultation, acute and chronic disease treatment, dispensing of medicine, counselling for both pre and post HIV testing as well as psycho-social counselling and family planning services. All Cimas clinics are headed by a doctor and have an in-house dispensary.
Lafarge Cement Zimbabwe chief executive officer Kaziwe Kaulule applauded Cimas for the venture. He said having visited a lot of facilities for Lafarge in Southern Africa and elsewhere, he considered the Manresa Clinic one of the best he had come across.
He said Cimas, in its partnership with Lafarge, had blended seamlessly into the Lafarge community.
He said Lafarge has a wellness policy that covers matters ranging from non-communicable disease management and maternal healthcare to mental health promotion and HIV and Aids programmes.
It was for this reason, he said, that Lafarge Cement Zimbabwe had initially established its own clinic at Manresa. However, over the years the scope of its requirements had increased, necessitating a more comprehensive on-site healthcare facility.
The company had therefore taken the decision to outsource the clinic with the strategic objective of providing a more comprehensive medical package for its employees and their families.
“It is with this background that when Cimas presented its proposal for the clinic we found common ground in the ethos of the two organisations.
“Their vision of the clinic elaborated a commitment to stellar healthcare for our employees, their families and the community at large,” he said.
“Furthermore, their innovative wellness products such as iGo gave us great confidence that Cimas would be the ideal partner for this project.
“Thus today, under the Cimas partnership, the clinic now offers consultation rooms for immediate diagnosis and clinical management of patients, patient education, counselling and ongoing monitoring, an on-site doctor on a full time basis, a fully equipped pharmacy with an adequate supply of drugs, clinical supplies and equipment, and good maintenance of infrastructure.
“The facility really supports health promotion and disease prevention for the business,” Mr Kaulule said.