Eastern Cape Health has published a R120m tender to outsource chronic mental healthcare in the province and has put emphasis on the reintegration of mental health patients in their communities. The Times reports that apart from chronic care‚ service providers have also been asked to tender for community-based initiatives to achieve this.
The report says 700 adult and 180 paediatric mental health patients are now being cared for in Life Esidimeni centres in Kirkwood and Bethelsdorp.
The tender documents show that the department is also seeking to distribute beds for chronic mental health patients across the province if possible.
Long-term patients are currently housed at the 700-bed Life Esidimeni Kirkwood facility and the 180 children at Life Esidimeni’s Algoa Frail Care Centre in Bethelsdorp.
The report says EC Health spokesperson Lwandile Sicwetsha declined to elaborate on any of the information in the tender documents‚ saying this would compromise the tender process.
The documents state that the capacity of mental health services still needs to be developed to meet the demands of the province.The Times report