Jack Bloom MPL

DA Gauteng Health Spokesman

A whopping 2133 operations were cancelled from January to July this year at the George Mukhari Hospital in Garankuwa in north west Gauteng.

This is revealed in a written reply by Gauteng Health MEC Hope Papo to my questions in the Gauteng Legislature.

Orthopaedics was the worst hit department, with 453 operations cancelled, followed by General Surgery (349 ops cancelled), Obstetrics (212), Urology (185), Opthalmology (183), Ear, Nose and Throat (146), Plastic/Reconstructive (135) and Gynaecology (131).

According to Papo, cancellations were due to three factors:

* Patient-related e.g. did not arrive on the day or was unfit to be operated on

* Theatre-related – this includes faulty equipment, no stock of essential consumable items, overbooking

* Doctor-related – surgeon or anaesthetist not being available due to illness or any other reason

The high number of cancelled operations has led to an enormous waiting list of 2453 patients for surgery. This is worse than the 1629 patients who wait for surgery at the Steve Biko Academic Hospital in Pretoria.

George Mukhari is the most neglected of the four academic hospitals in Gauteng. It is totally unacceptable that more than 300 operations are cancelled every month at this hospital.

Urgent intervention is needed to ensure that surgery problems are fixed at the hospital as soon as possible, otherwise waiting lists will continue to grow as patients suffer.

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