Saturday, 25 May, 2024
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Tembisa Hospital reviews suspension of visiting hours

The embattled Tembisa Hospital, which last Thursday announced a ban on visiting hours for the emergency and accident units until tensions in the area had settled, has said it will review this decision.

The suspension was initiated after hospital staff were apparently intimidated by community organisations, during which time “the dignity of patients was disregarded”, said acting CEO Dr Mohlamme Mathabathe.

Announcing the suspension, he had said visitors or relatives of patients would have to speak to the nurse or doctor at the help desk, and only in exceptional circumstances would families be allowed into the treatment area, reports EWN.

The health facility admitted that as a result of capacity constraints, some patients are kept in the emergency ward for more than 24 hours before being admitted.

The hospital said it is difficult to maintain order and ensure the safety of patients when there are visitors. Mathabathe said they would implement a better system to monitor visits.

“We don’t allow them to come at the same time before 2 and 3: we have that open policy to say if you can come in at 10, we allow it. If it’s one family at a time, we are able to monitor it better.”

However, on Friday, a group of community members marched to the hospital over the poor conditions at the health facility, complaining that patients were treated badly by staff and security, and despite flagging their concerns to government, no responses had been received.

They said the hospital had been badly managed for years.

The hospital is currently the subject of a Special Investigating Unit probe, looking into hundreds of millions of rands looted since the start of the pandemic.

It’s the only public facility in the township, and also serves the neighbouring areas of Ivory Park, Diepsloot and Clayville.

Chairperson of the Tembisa Community Forum Lele Lefakane said the community had aired its grievances to the provincial department of health, without any response, numerous times, and it was planning to hand over a memorandum of demands to hospital management, which would have seven days to respond.

Mathabathe said he would review the suspension of the visiting hours.


EWN article – Tembisa Hospital to review decision to suspend visiting hours (Open access)


EWN article – Watch: residents march against ‘bad management’ at Tembisa Hospital (Open access)


See more from MedicalBrief archives:


Tribunal upholds ‘grossly negligent’ ruling against Tembisa Hospital CEO and staff


Severe censure of medical, nursing and support staff at Tembisa ‘zoo’


DA demands commission of inquiry into state of public health





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