Pretoria - A total of seven doctors are expected to start working at Far East Rand Hospital next Monday as part of efforts to fill critical professional posts in hospitals, the Gauteng Department of Health announced on Tuesday.
The department said it was currently recruiting doctors to fill critical posts at George Mukhari Academic, Steve Biko Academic and Mamelodi hospitals.
"An advertisement was placed in national newspapers two weeks ago inviting applications from health professionals interested in working different hospitals in the province," the department said.
Despite a process of rationalising staff in other categories and cost containment measures, the department said it continued to assess critical staff shortages and to make the necessary interventions.
"The department would like to express appreciation to health professionals for the work they do to improve the quality of life of the people of Gauteng despite a national shortage of professionals in the country."
Briefing the media on progress made by the department, MEC for Health and Social Development, Ntombi Mekgwe, highlighted that the department had in the past year been implementing a number of initiatives to improve service delivery within the department, with the most pressing challenges, including the improvement of payment to suppliers, receiving top priority.
"We have had to review our systems to identify inefficiencies and put in place strategies to improve the situation ... We have initiated the re-engineering of the Medical Supply Depot (MSD) to improve the warehousing, delivery of medicines and ensure customer satisfaction," Mekgwe said.
She added that an investigation had been instituted at the MSD and recommendations derived from the investigations would be used in the revision of the business model for the MSD.
Significant progress had been made in the past two weeks regarding the payment of suppliers and service providers, with an amount of R874 million being paid to suppliers on 30 April 2012.
In the past week, R63 million was paid to 818 NGOs to enable them to continue their operations and assist the department in looking after vulnerable members of society.