The Democratic Nursing Organisation of South Africa (DENOSA) in North West is giving the Department of Health in the province only two weeks to start doing things the right way in fixing the man-made crisis the department has been put under, or else nurses will no longer be part of a system that cannot provide beds to sickly patients in facilities because of corruption.
Nurses have had to put on a brave face to patients every day in facilities whenever an ambulance is not picking up patients who are due for transfers from one facility to the other. Hygiene, which is a major component of health service, is becoming impossible to achieve as sewage is meandering around facilities like Moses Kotane Hospital.
Patients at maternity section at Bophelong Hospital in Mafikeng are having to share beds while others have to sleep on the floor all because of bed shortage, all because money for operations have been exhausted through dubious tenders.
DENOSA calls for national Minister of Health to show leadership now and act because another Life Esidimeni-like disaster is brewing in North West. In the meantime, the current MEC of Health together with Head of Department must be relieved of their duties with immediate effect as a first step to arresting this rot.
DENOSA also supports the call by ANC Youth League in the province for a forensic investigation into the affairs of the department. This is where the National Department of Health must step to the plate and play the big brother role, and not allow the investigation to be done through the office of the Premier as it may be implicated.
DENOSA is disappointed by lack of political will to arrest the issue of brokering services across its departments in the province. As a result, millions upon millions get siphoned out for costly charges for services such Emergency Medical Transport (EMS) and mobile clinics, which third party companies have been benefiting handsomely much to the disadvantage of service in many needy areas within the department.
As DENOSA, we call for an investigation into the processes and evaluate whether proper tender processes were followed in leasing the West End Building for Excelsius Nursing College whose dates of leasing and inspection do not add up.
The department has been under a cloud of corruption and inconsistencies for a long time. The frustration of the nurses has taken a strenuous tall which has rendered them hopeless and full of regrets for joining the noble profession.
“It has been under administration that also introduced moratorium all in the name of cost cutting which has clearly demonstrated lack of consideration for nurses and communities,” says DENOSA North West provincial chairperson, Motlalepule Maikepa.
“While shortage of staff has taken its tall and all senior post are on hollywood (acting positions), the department continues to pay millions of Rands on private owned companies. Outsourcing of ambulances under the name of Buthelezi costs the department milions while the appointed EMRS personnel are rusting and getting redundant including procured ambulances that are parked at the department yard gathering dust.”
DENOSA demands that all departmental heads involved in this saga must be jailed.
DENOSA shop stewards are talking to CEOs and nurse managers in facilities across the province, forewarning them that we will withdraw nurses in facilities where healthcare service is compromised if the crisis is not resolved in two weeks, because it is nurses who get blamed and not heads of departments who make compromising decisions or allow such decisions to prevail.
Issued by the Democratic Nursing Organisation of South Africa (DENOSA) in North West
For more information, contact:
Motlalepule Maikepa, DENOSA North West Provincial Chairperson