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Excess deaths in Eastern Cape must be accounted for

August 10th, 2020

People are dying in much higher numbers in the Eastern Cape during the Covid-19 period. Excess deaths recorded in the province between June and July paint a dismal picture of potentially under reported Covid-19 fatalities, with almost four times as many excess deaths than the official Covid-19 total. Excess deaths are defined as deaths which occur in excess of what would normally be expected, based on historical figures. If these …

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Hospital staff find innovative solutions in Health Department’s absence

August 3rd, 2020

Hospital management and staff at the frontline of the defence against the raging Covid-19 pandemic, are having to find innovative ways to stretch meagre resources while the political leadership continue to claim they are handling the situation. Today I, together DA Shadow Minister of Health, Siviwe Gwarube, MP and Alfred Nzo Constituency Leader, Baxolile Nodada, MP, conducted an oversight inspection at the at Mount Ayliff Hospital and the St Patrick’s …

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A Tale of Two Systems

July 10th, 2020

How public private partnerships could lift EC out of the clutches of Covid-19 The private sector can build a fully equipped field hospital with 1450 beds in just seven weeks. The public health department has yet to lay a single brick in order to build much needed district field hospitals despite planning them for three months. This is a spectacular failure on the part of the state and highlights the …

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Department of Health fails Fort England Covid-19 response

June 30th, 2020

The Fort England Psychiatric Hospital, in Makhanda, has a full 40 bed unit to accommodate patients who test positive for Covid-19, but not a single professional nurse to work in it. This was revealed in an oversight visit conducted by myself and my colleague, Shadow Minister of Health Siviwe Gwarube, MP, from the National Assembly. The hospital management has made an impressive effort to rearrange the space available to create …

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Uitenhage Provincial Hospital is severely underfunded

June 28th, 2020

The Uitenhage Provincial Hospital has been severely underfunded, because the Department of Health has incorrectly allocated funds to it as a district hospital, when it is, in fact, officially gazetted as a regional hospital. This is an unnecessary bureaucratic nightmare in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic. Wards stand empty at Uitenhage Provincial, while other hospitals across the metro have become overcrowded battlegrounds against the disease. The hospital is supposed …

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Provincialisation of EC clinics must be reviewed

June 24th, 2020

Clinics across the province are stuck in limbo, with staff crying out for leadership, as the process of transferring clinics from municipal level to the provincial Department of Health drags on, eight years after the process started. Once again, a lack of decisive leadership and poor planning have left the department in a state of complete disarray. In 2012 the Provincial Department of Health embarked upon a provincialisation process to …

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Northern Areas clinics in crisis

June 11th, 2020

The Clinics in the Northern Areas of Nelson Mandela Bay are in crisis, with the clinic in Helenvale closed for over a year and a half due to the violent crime in the area. This has had a catastrophic knock on effect on the Malabar clinic, that has seen its case load double as Helenvale residents turn to them for help. This was revealed during an oversight inspection I conducted …

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Hospital closures sign of deepening crisis in EC health

June 4th, 2020

Just when the Department of Health should be stepping up and caring for the sick and vulnerable, they are closing their hospital doors, because they haven’t taken sufficient measures to protect their own staff, who are at the frontline of the fight against the spread of Covid-19. In the past 24 hours they have had to close Livingstone Hospital in Nelson Mandela Bay and shut down three units in Cecilia …

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Accurate Covid-19 data critical in curbing hotspots

April 21st, 2020

There are serious concerns relating to the accuracy of data being provided with regards to Provincial Covid-19 statistics in the Eastern Cape, as well as the lack of daily, updated information. This is extremely concerning, as potentially false information is being spread, while accurate, collated information is being withheld. Information is power. Not only should the members of the Eastern Cape Provincial Legislature be provided regular and detailed daily updates …

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What’s the plan, Premier?

April 8th, 2020

Eastern Cape Premier, Oscar Mabuyane, must break radio silence and share the province’s plans to deal with the Coronavirus outbreak in the Eastern Cape. While the Democratic Alliance welcomes the plans the Premier is putting in place to alleviate the impact of the Covid-19 lockdown on the provincial economy once the lockdown is over, there has been very little forthcoming about what the province is doing to deal with the …

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