Klerksdorp - The emergency services in the North West has received an extra boost with the graduation of 24 students from the emergency care technician training programme from the North West Emergency Medical Rescue Services (EMRS) College.
These emergency care technicians will help ensure that appropriate and efficient quality care is given to patients, particularly in rural areas. The graduates are qualified to make decisions as practitioners, but with limited independent practice.
The graduates will also form part of the team which will be working during this year FIFA Confederations Cup and the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
Speaking at the graduation ceremony held in Orkney at Klerksdorp, the Deputy Minister of Health, Dr Molefi Sefularo said: "The2009 FIFA Confederations Cup in June this year and the 2010 FIFA World Cup will also benefit from the in-depth knowledge and skills of these new emergency care technicians.
"They will add to those health professionals who will be able to respond effectively to emergency medical care and disaster situations during the main two soccer event."
One of the graduates, Daphne Josopi, told BuaNews said she would avail herself for the two main soccer events to be hosted in Rustenburg,
"I completed my two years in this programme which was challenging because we had to do a lot of practical work, but even though it was challenging, I learnt a lot of stuff that will help me do my job in a very professional manner," said the 25-year-old.
She added that she was looking forward to helping her community.
There are currently 392 learners in the programme at the North West EMRS College.
They are funded by the provincial Department of Health through a bursary contract. The two-year National Certificate Programme is National Qualifications Framework (NQF) level 5, registered with the South African Qualifications Authority.
The introduction of the programme by the department forms part of an initiative to introduce a new mid-level worker qualification for an emergency care technician and addresses the pressing human resources challenges facing health delivery in the country.
There are other EMRS colleges in Orkney in the North West, Lebone in Gauteng, another in KwaZulu-Natal as well as the South African Military Health Services.