Harare - Zimbabwe is reportedly in need of at least 8 000 new nurses to meet its growing demand of health services, reports the Zimbabwe Independent.
Although Zimbabwe's health delivery service system was held back by a shortage of manpower, among other problems, there was a freeze on recruitment of more staff due to unavailability of funds stemming from an economic crisis that saw government struggling to pay its workers.
Health minister Dr David Parirenyatwa revealed that there were about 3 000 qualified nurses in the country. However, due to the government policy to freeze new recruitments, this had left many health care centres understaffed.
The bill was adopted in 2011 to contain a ballooning public sector wage bill.
"If we go around the country you will see that our country needs between 7 000 and 8 000 nurses but we have 3 000 nurses that are qualified sitting at home," Parirenyatwa was quoted saying.
According to the Voice of America, despite the southern African country facing a huge civil service wage bill, it was also filled up with a number of "ghost workers" - people who were on government payroll but did not really do any work.
The government reportedly carried out an audit of its workforce as a way of dealing with the problem.
It emerged that some of the civil servants had become "redundant" and others duplicated duties, according to a previous News 24 report said.