Re-planning Begging? Harare‘s Health Infrastructure Under the Impact of COVID-19


  • Nesbert Mashingaidze


: planning, health infrastructure, COVID-19, social development


The eruption of infectious diseases such as cholera and COVID-19 in
cities and towns requires city health authorities to rethink soft and
hard health infrastructure re-planning. Infrastructure (hard and soft)
is the operational framework of any institution or organization.
Therefore, an organisation cannot function properly if the existing
infrastructure is not serving its function. COVID-19 has caused
serious havoc in towns and cities. The rate at which infectious
diseases such as COVID-19 are spreading shows that the carrying
capacity of hospitals and clinics has been exceeded, leading to the
conversion of some structures into health infrastructure amid fears of
increasing numbers of infected persons. The geometric increase of
COVID-19 cases in some cities provides a clear signal to city
authorities to prepare for international standard health infrastructure
that accommodates more patients. Spiking figures of COVID-19
cases in towns require city authorities to re-plan and re-orient health
infrastructures guided by international health standards guidelines
set by World Health Organisation (WHO). Additionally, some of
these pandemics are ground-borne and others are air-borne. This
means that proper planning and orientation of health infrastructure
is needed, taking into account issues of accessibility and affordability
by its users. With this in mind, the outbreak of COVID-19 can be
viewed as a game-changer in the planning of city health
infrastructure than just a passing phase. The article argues that
current city health infrastructure considers re-planning and
orientation to cater for the voluminous increase in the number of patients to be accommodated, especially with the outbreak of