Calls for improved security at psychiatric hospitals after patient stabbing

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The official opposition and the nursing union have called on improved security at Limpopo psychiatric hospitals, following the stabbing to death of a patient, writes MedicalBrief.

The Democratic Alliance (DA) in Limpopo has called on the Limpopo Health MEC Phophi Ramathuba to prioritise security at health facilities after a patient was stabbed to death at Evuxakeni Psychiatric Hospital in Giyani on Sunday, 3 January 2021.

The DA said in a statement on the Polity site: Although the full details of the incident are still not clear, it is very concerning that this happened on the hospital’s premises and seems to have involved another patient.

This incident should not be taken lightly by MEC Ramathuba and her department. Similar incidents should be avoided by putting measures in place to prioritise the safety of patients and staff in our healthcare facilities.

The department has indicated that it is currently investigating the incident and we will follow any developments closely. The DA will expect action to be taken against officials at the hospital in the event of neglect on their part.

The DA is committed to ensuring that patient safety is prioritised at healthcare facilities and believes the department must provide reasonable security measures to maintain a safe environment where patients, public, and staff feel safe and secure within hospital grounds.


Meanwhile, The Star notes in a report for subscribers only that Limpopo Health has stated that internal investigations into the matter are ongoing and that a case of murder has been opened with the suspect arrested. The department said the full details of the incident were however still not clear.

The Democratic Nurses Organisation of SA’s provincial secretary, Jacob Molepo, lashed out at the security levels at healthcare facilities in the province. “The department needs to do something, we cannot tolerate such incidents any longer. We lost innocent patients in Sekhukhune and in the Vhembe district. The issue of security also came under the spotlight then but it seems nothing was done.”

The Star reports that Molepo questioned the safety of nurses at the province’s healthcare facilities. “These are trying times for nurses across the province, with the coronavirus pandemic. We need to ensure that the safety of nurses is a priority but it seems as if they are being exposed.”

Statement on Polity site

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