Mamelodi Hospital short of 366 staff

By Jack Bloom MPL, DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Health:

The Mamelodi Hospital is short of 366 staff, with only 871 filled positions out of 1237 posts.

This was revealed today by Gauteng Health MEC Qedani Mahlangu in response to my questions concerning problems at this hospital that were identified by the Public Protector when she visited there recently.

The biggest shortage is of nurses – only 155 out of 445 nurse posts are filled, which means that the hospital is short of 290 nurses.

According to Mahlangu, the hospital is being upgraded over a period of two years from a district hospital to a fully-fledged regional hospital.

She said that more specialists were being recruited in the paediatrics, internal medicine and gynaecology departments.

She said that there were no major equipment shortages at the hospital and she was taking “firm action” to improve management and adhere to health quality standards.

I am not convinced that these steps will fix the deficiencies that shocked Public Protector Thuli Madonsela when she visited there on 20 October 2015.

Overcrowding is a major problem, with some patients sleeping in wheelchairs and on the floor.

Previous upgrading efforts have failed because of incompetent contractors who couldn’t do the job in time.

The extreme shortage of nurses must be rectified as soon as possible.

This hospital needs competent management and proper staffing, otherwise the problems will continue.