Today's Labour News

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healthcareCity Press reports that distressed and disillusioned doctors in the North West have called the province’s current crisis in healthcare a silent killer.  

Last week, the strike action that has affected the province’s hospitals and clinics reached fever pitch as protesters stormed into the theatre at Klerksdorp’s Tshepong Hospital, forcing staff out.  The theatre had to be shut down, despite there being three cases listed for operations.  The kitchen was closed down and clinical managers had to scramble to find a way to feed patients in the wards.  In Taung District Hospital, doctors reported that there were no staff to help feed the patients, while Zeerust Hospital was completely shut down last week due to the volatility.  On Friday, all work at Potchefstroom Hospital ground to a halt after protesters burned tyres at the entrance, threatening to burn the doctors as well.  “It is horrendous … innocent people are being denied their basic right to [heathcare].  People are being killed,” said Dr Ebrahim Variava, a Wits professor and internal medicine specialist at Tshepong hospital.  For two months, some patients have not been able to access their chronic medication, which could lead to complications in their conditions.  The inter-ministerial task team assigned to resolve the crisis, which has lasted more than two months, arrived in the province on Friday.  Meanwhile, the union said it was not its fault that things had escalated to this point, and that blame should lie squarely with the provincial government.  The union’s deputy secretary, December Mavuso, indicated they would meet with the task team on Monday.

  • Read this report by Vuyo Mkize in full at City Press

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