Gauteng clinics short of 1.2 million birth control pills

Jack Bloom MPL

DA Gauteng Health Spokesman

Gauteng clinics have run short of more than 1.2 million birth control pills this year.

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

According to Papo, shortages were experienced with Microval pills from May to August this year, and Nordette pills from March to July.

This was because of “erratic demands by facilities resulting in an earlier than expected stock depletion” and “the contracted supplier could not fulfil increased orders placed … to cope with the demand.”

This is a poor excuse. In some months not a single Microval or Nordette pill was delivered to public clinics.

The shortage of these pills has probably led to many unplanned pregnancies and related social problems.

Family planning needs to be given a higher priority by the Gauteng Health Department which has long neglected this area despite high demand.