Tuesday, 30 November, 2021
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Public Protector rules hospitals in 4 provinces fail Constitutional standards

The Office of the Public Protector has released the outcome of investigations into the state of more than a dozen public healthcare facilities in Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal, writes MedicalBrief.

Between August and October 2020, Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane and her deputy Kholeka Gcaleka,  accompanied by a team of investigators, inspected more than a dozen public hospitals. Mkhwebane said: “The aim was to assess how the facilities coped with the demand for services and to get a sense of whether sufficient safety measures were being implemented to cushion both workers and the public from the devastation brought about by Covid-19.

They were Christ the King District Hospital in Ixopo, Rietvlei District Hospital in uMzimkhulu, Mbongolwane District Hospital in EshoweMbongolwane Reserve, and KwaMagwaza District Hospital in Melmoth, Jubilee District Hospital, Dr George Mukhari Academic Hospital, Steve Biko Academic Hospital, Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital, Lilian Ngoyi Community Health Centre and Charlotte Maxeke Johannesburg Academic Hospital.

Their investigation found that the provision and administration of health services by all the provincial departments of health and the hospitals they visited did not accord with the obligations imposed by the Constitution and the law. Problems included systemic deficiencies, like staff shortages, poor physical infrastructure, lack of laundry services and poor information technology connectivity.

KZN Health had failed to ensure “appropriate conditions for the enjoyment, delivery and access to adequate as well as effective healthcare services for the rural community of Ixopo, uMzimkhulu, Eshowe and Mthonjaneni as well as surrounding areas being served by the hospitals.

Meanwhile, in Gauteng, the office probed the administration, management and responsiveness to the COVID-19 pandemic and found administrative deficiencies at the provincial health department led to problems with primary healthcare services at Jubilee District Hospital, Dr George Mukhari Academic Hospital, Steve Biko Academic Hospital, Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital, Lilian Ngoyi Community Health Centre and Charlotte Maxeke Johannesburg Academic Hospital.

 

News24 article – What the Public Protector found after probing state of healthcare at some public hospitals (Open access)

 

Public Prosecutor report into Health Service in public hospitals KZN

 

Public Prosecutor report into Health Services in public hospitals Gauteng

 

Public Prosecutor report into Health Service in public hospitals Limpopo

 

See more from MedicalBrief archives:

 

Nursing unions: State hospitals like rudderless ships, with acting CEOS

 

IRR report: Deficiencies in state health sector doom NHI to failure

 

National Health report details grim state of KZN public hospitals

 

A tale of two hospitals — AfriForum's oversight visit to Limpopo

 

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