Mothers and babies at risk as power cuts plague Tembisa obstetrics unit

Patricia Mokgohlwa MPL

Spokesperson on Women and Constituency Head for Tembisa

The continued lack of electricity and hot water at the Tembisa Midwife Obstetric Unit in Ekurhuleni places the lives of new born babies and their mothers at high risk of infection or death.

Since the unit was opened by Gauteng Health MEC Hope Papo in September 2012 nurses face a constant battle to keep the centre operational. The centre was built to increase the likelihood of uncomplicated births beneficial to both mother and infant, but is often without electricity. This problem is further complicated by the fact that the generator at the centre is old and often fails to work when the electricity is cut.

The unit should operate on a 24 hour basis, but due to the lack of stable power supply, patients are often turned away.

I will submit questions to the MEC about the money allocated to the facility and the measures or procedures in place to monitor the effective functioning of the unit.

The state of this vital healthcare facility is completely unacceptable and compromises the lives and safety of the patients it serves.

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