There were two cases of NIHL recorded during the year. Hearing conservation programmes continue to be prioritised in order to minimise cases of NIHL within the workforce. Hearing conservation awareness was offered to all employees and contractors at pre-employment, annual, periodic, and pre-placement examinations. Those who experienced percentage loss hearing (PLH) during screening audiograms were referred to the audiologist for confirmation. These were monitored bi-annually to track for deterioration of hearing.
Monitoring of employees and contractors exposed to lead continued with a total of 92 employees and contractors
being tested this year. No cases of abnormal lead levels were identified during the year.
We focused on reduction of exposure to health hazards at the source through good engineering practice and rigorous maintenance of controls. Our standards and procedures go beyond just legal compliance as we continue to seek the best standards for employees.
Screening of suspected cases and contacts was carried out during the year. Identified cases were reported to the Ministry of Health and Child Care and commenced on treatment per the Ministry’s guidelines. Reports were simultaneously made to the National Social Security Authority (NSSA) for compensation purposes and statistics. Contact tracing includes employees in the same work team as the index case.
Out of five malaria cases treated at the operating subsidiary’s facilities, three gave a positive history of prior
travel to malaria endemic areas. Two cases of Zimplats mining employees who tested positive to both rapid and microscopic tests had no history of travelling to malaria endemic areas. The Ministry of Health and Child Care have defined the Turf area as a seasonal low transmission zone. Internal malaria control programmes continued in line with the national guidelines. Of the five rapid test positive malaria cases, four were from the mining division while one was from the processing division.
The Zimplats medical services department has engaged the services of Zimbabwe Aids Prevention and Support
Organisation (ZAPSO) to carry out VCT. The number of clients who underwent VCT in FY2017 went up by 55% after engaging the new business partner.
A new Zimplats Wellness Policy was crafted to reflect the Group’s evolved thrust which now focuses on total
wellness as opposed to merely focusing on HIV/Aids. The wellness policy seeks to enhance and protect the health
and wellbeing of all employees, their families and the surrounding communities, addressing occupational, noncommunicable diseases and the work environment. Two hundred wellness champions were re-trained to align them
to the requirements of the new wellness policy.
In line with the national thrust towards housing the Group remains committed to ensuring that all employees live in decent accommodation. Due to funding challenges, the Group’s housing delivery programme was slower than desired. Low cost housing solutions have been pursued and it is anticipated that housing delivery under the home ownership scheme will recommence in the short to medium term.