Clinics must offer refuge, compassion, safety

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Pretoria - Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa says a clinic must be a source of knowledge for residents, a refuge for those injured and in need of emergency care.

He was addressing the official handover of a clinic in Embalenhle Township in Secunda, Mpumalanga, on Saturday. The newly built clinic will render services to Mbalenhle Extension 14 residents mostly.

He said it must be a sanctuary that welcomes young people who wish to access condoms, contraceptives and treatment for infections like TB and HIV.

“Compassion, warmth and safety must be the defining experience of all who come to the clinic. No patients should be stigmatised. No patients should be discriminated against.

“We are certain that the new facility will improve the working conditions and boost the morale of health care workers,” said the Deputy President.

He said the handover of the clinic reflects government’s shared commitment to build a compassionate society in which all have access to quality health care.

He said he was shocked by the state of the clinic and by the lack of adequate infrastructure and appropriate facilities when he visited in November 2014.

“We were deeply impressed, however, by the dedication of the clinic staff to tend to the needs of the community under such difficult conditions. It is from that visit, that the partners gathered here were spurred into action.

“Today, this area boasts a health facility that is better placed to meet the health demands of local residents, more people have better prospects of receiving quality health care in dignity, and we have a better chance of saving lives and preventing the spread of diseases.”

He urged the community to ensure that health workers are safe and feel safe and maintaining a healthy lifestyle in their homes, schools and places of work.

He also urged the community to guard and protect the hard-earned investment that the clinic is.

The Deputy President expressed appreciation to Sasol Company for investing in building the clinic. “Thank you for treating the wellbeing of our nation not as a cost, but as an investment.”

He also urged many more in the business community to expand social opportunities by investing in the health of South Africans.

“As we say in the Vision Statement of the National Development Plan, this is a society where we feel loved, respected and cared for at home, in community and the public institutions we have created; We feel understood; We feel needed; We feel trustful; We feel trusted; We feel accommodative; We feel accommodated; We feel informed; We feel healthy; We feel safe; We feel resourceful and inventive; We learn together; We talk to each other; We share our work; We play; We worship; We ponder and laugh; and we are energised by sharing our resourcefulness.” -

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