Jack Bloom MPL

DA Gauteng Health Spokesman

Helen Joseph hospital in west Johannesburg spends more than R150 000 a year replacing stolen flush handles that make toilets unusable. Tap handles are also stolen frequently.

I discovered this when I visited the hospital this morning to investigate complaints of broken toilets.

The toilets affected are the public ones outside the wards. Six of the mens toilets that I visited on seven floors are out of order because of stolen handles. Without the handle the toilet is unusable.

I took pictures of unflushed toilets with a foul smell. I also have pictures of unusable wash basins because the taps have been stolen (these are available on request).

Hospital officials told me that theft is a terrible problem and it costs about R6000 to replace a flush master unit.

They are looking for replacements that will be less difficult to steal.

Delays in replacing these items are because the Gauteng Health department has not yet released budget funds for the financial year that started on 1 April.

It’s really appalling that people steal such things in a hospital where hygiene is all important.

Patients and hospital visitors suffer because of this. It is a very sad comment on our society.

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