The Solidarity Occupational Guild for Health Practitioners has strongly condemned the alleged corruption in the Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPSCA), which could lead to unqualified doctors and nurses unlawfully getting accreditation. The occupational guild added that this corruption and inefficiency were endemic to all state-related institutions, and that uncertainty regarding qualifications will continue until private medical training and accreditation becomes possible.
Although the guild welcomes the investigation by the Special Investigation Unit (SIU), stronger steps are needed to prevent such actions in future. The reason is that this investigation merely tackles the symptoms of a dysfunctional system instead of determining its cause.
According to the occupational guild, it is very concerning that the government is increasingly taking control of the industry despite the numerous data indicating that they actually lack the competency and skills to solve the structural problems.
According to Hennie Bierman, head of the guilds at Solidarity, such an investigation does not go far enough to completely eliminate this undesirable behaviour. “Investigation, exposing of facts and prosecution where necessary is definitely a positive sign, but further steps are necessary to cure the cause of the behaviour. The fact is that the current system wherein training and accreditation is practically exclusively done by the state, simply does not provide the necessary incentives and liabilities to stop such misconduct even before it happens. We must therefore take precaution rather than aftercare.”
This occupational guild herewith also announces its plans to continue liaising with all involved parties and applying constant pressure until there is significant change, to thereby not only protect the profession, but also to ensure that patients receive the best service possible.