Laundry problems the tip of the ice-berg at KZN’s Hlabisa Hospital

Dr Imran Keeka, MPL

DA KZN Spokesperson on Health

A DECISION by the KZN Department of Health to remove the entire management team at Hlabisa Hospital, pending a probe into allegations of mismanagement, and replace them with a provincial task team is welcomed by the DA.

Earlier media reports of an out of order laundry service – resulting in hospital laundry being dried outside on the grass – appear to be just the tip of the iceberg.

While this facility remains broken and dirty washing has to be sent to St Francis Hospital, some 100kms away in Ulundi, a well-placed hospital source has revealed that there are other very serious problems at the hospital.

These include;

–          Sick and weak patients being made to carry their own mattresses and often sleep on the floor

–          Staff being employed without proper qualifications/ criteria

–          Supply chain irregularities – when ordered goods arrive at the hospital they disappear

–          Toilet paper being rationed to some patients

–          Broken toilets still being used in the park home where TB patients receive medication

–          A shortage of nurses

–          A lack of medicine

–          Nepotism involving senior hospital management

–          Security privileges for senior management,

It is unacceptable that those who should be serving the community are serving their own interests at the expense of the state and those dependent on the hospital’s services.

There should be no hesitation in ensuring that those responsible for this deplorable situation are shown the door.

The DA will closely monitor the department’s intervention at this hospital.  This exercise must yield the best possible outcome in the interest of the most vulnerable that this hospital should be serving.

The DA will also request a full report to be made available to the KZN health portfolio committee and will report back to the public on the matter.