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The Health and Other Service Personnel Trade Union of South Africa (Hospersa) is disturbed by recent reports of a ceiling collapse at Mankweng Hospital in Limpopo. The Union calls on the Limpopo Department of Health to address the province’s Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) violations caused by poor maintenance at the province’s hospitals and clinics.
According to reports a ceiling collapsed at the Mankweng Hospital outside Polokwane last week while a paediatrician was preparing for an emergency caesarean on a patient. It was reported that the ceiling collapse was due a suspected leak on the dilapidated building structure.
“Hospersa is alarmed by the increasing number of incidents of unsafe working conditions our members have to work under,” said Hospersa Limpopo Provincial Secretary, JJ Mashego. “First it was the structural collapse at Charlotte Maxeke Hospital, now another near fatal incident at Mankweng Hospital. Health care workers should not have to constantly look over their shoulders with safety concerns while rendering health care service,” he added.
Reports have also quoted the Limpopo Member of the Executive Council (MEC) for Health, Dr Phophi Ramathuba, who apparently said that structural collapses have become a common occurrence in public health care facilities due to poor maintenance. It was reported she admitted to the shortage of skilled artisans at Limpopo’s provincial health care facilities, which leads to the poor maintenance of these facilities.
“Hospersa is shocked by her admission to these poor OHS standards. Unfortunately admission of guilt is not enough. Her department needs to take active measures in addressing these OHS concerns before we start losing patients and workers in incidents which could have been avoided,” concluded Mashego.
Issued by Health and Other Service Personnel Trade Union of South Africa
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