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HR Havoc in EC Health

May 8th, 2022

Despite plans, commitments and promises to the contrary, Eastern Cape Health Department leadership has failed to finalise an affordable staff organogram, failed to fill critical frontline posts, failed to renew essential contracts, failed to fill the thousands of still vacant Emergency Medical Services (EMS) posts and failed to address the mental health crisis in the province. The Democratic Alliance has been calling for the Department to be placed under administration, …

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Ambulance shortages will cost lives over Easter

April 13th, 2022
New provincial legislation in the Western Cape will regulate ambulance services in both the public and private sectors. To date there were no regulations that determined what defines an ambulance, the minimum requirements for such a vehicle and what performance targets they should be measured by.

Severe ambulance shortages, short-staffed emergency medical services and no apparent plans in place for temporary air ambulance services all cast doubts on the Department of Health’s ability to deal with emergencies over the Easter Holidays. The increase in road accidents and other trauma cases over the Easter holiday period is well documented, but despite promising to take steps to boost paramedic and ambulance numbers in the Eastern Cape Province, the …

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Nurses’ strike puts patients directly in harm’s way

March 25th, 2022

The Democratic Alliance condemns in the strongest terms the illegal strike by nurses that is planned to take place across the province today, in protest against the termination of contracts for Community Healthcare Workers and Grant-funded Covid-19 Healthcare Workers at the end of March. There have already been reports of incidents at some provincial hospitals. For instance, at the Cradock Hospital, desperately ill patients, including children, have been sent home …

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New Eastern Cape aeromedical contract bid already delayed

March 14th, 2022

The tender process to appoint a new aeromedical service for the Eastern Cape, that would ensure a functional air ambulance service to airlift critically injured and ill patients to medical facilities, has already been delayed. Last week, the Democratic Alliance revealed that Health MEC, Nomakhosazana Meth, had finally cancelled the tender awarded to Leli Investments, after the company proved incapable of fulfilling the requirements of the contract. In a recent …

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Delays in cancelling EC air ambulance tender further deprives residents of vital service

March 10th, 2022
Jane Cowley

The Eastern Cape Health Department has finally admitted defeat and announced that they have cancelled the controversial Aeromedical tender and advised that they will be putting out a new call for service providers. The Democratic Alliance has been relentless in its opposition to this contract as we smelt a rat right from the start. This is a victory for common sense. Sadly, this means that Eastern Cape residents will be …

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Health Budget must protect hospital and clinic allocations

March 8th, 2022

The Eastern Cape Health Department needs to drastically cut its obscenely bloated non-medical staff cohort and protect the operational budgets of district, provincial and tertiary hospitals. This is the only way the Department will be able to improve its financial prospects for the 2022/2023 financial year and ensure that hospitals function effectively. Last year it was revealed that a whopping R3,57 billion was spent on non-medical officials, while just R1,56 …

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MEC Meth has blood on her hands

January 26th, 2022

Health MEC Nomakosazana Meth failed to get the aeromedical service up and running over the festive season, despite her vocal promises to do so, and her inaction could very well have cost people their lives. This service, which should have been operational six months ago, is vital in getting critical patients with life-threatening conditions to hospital as soon as possible. Over the festive season, 210 people lost their lives in …

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Premier blind to health crisis in Eastern Cape

December 15th, 2021

As we head into the festive season, more than forty hospitals across the Eastern Cape are unable to adequately feed patients who are spending their holidays away from their loved ones, but Eastern Cape Premier, Oscar Mabuyane, has publicly stated that the Department of Health is not in crisis. Service providers have gone unpaid for months, medical devices required for surgeries cannot be procured, mental health patients across the province …

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Still no emergency air service in Eastern Cape

November 11th, 2021

Four months after the High Court set aside an interdict that prevented Black Eagle Ambulance Services from operating in the Eastern Cape, they have yet to leave the ground. In their bid to have the interdict against them set aside, the company claimed that they had invested “immense expenditure” in preparing to carry out the contracted service. This included purchasing specialised equipment, refurbishing other equipment and contracting and training crew. …

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Untreated sewage crises destroying health, economy and environment

September 30th, 2021

The Democratic Alliance plan to meet with the new Minister of Water and Sanitation and the Minister of Environmental Affairs to discuss the ongoing crisis of raw, untreated sewage that has been spilling into the streets and rivers of towns in the Chris Hani District municipality for years. The uncaring, incapable ANC-led district municipality has for years violated the constitutional rights of the residents they are supposed to serve, placing …

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