Gauteng Health hard at work to address surgical backlog

Thursday, March 14, 2019

In a bid to address surgical backlogs, Gauteng Health MEC Gwen Ramokgopa has sent a letter of request to facilitate a handover of the site where Soshanguve District Hospital will be built.

Once built, the hospital is set to alleviate a backlog at Dr George Mukhari Academic Hospital (DGMAH).

“This initiative will enable the hospital to reduce backlog of surgical procedures and help more patients who are awaiting their turn to be operated, especially in the Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Cardiothoracic Surgery and Orthopedics departments,” said the MEC.

According to the MEC, the Soshanguve District Hospital is progressing slowly due to land issues.

In the interim, the department has collaborated with private hospitals to make use of their theatres as their theatre time is accommodative.

The department is working in partnership with the private sector, through the Hospital Association of South Africa, particularly Mediclinic, who have signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the department, and already the collaboration has been successfully tested and ready to be expanded.

“Private hospitals will provide theatre time mainly with the department having to supply consumables and the workforce for these operations.

“I’m happy that our management, specialists, registrars and nurses are happy about this arrangement and are also prepared to make the intervention work best for their patients,” said MEC Ramokgopa.

Of the four central hospitals – Steve Biko, DGMAH, Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital (CHBAH) and Charlotte Maxeke Academic Hospital – the program will prioritise the two situated in townships being DGMAH and CHBAH.

“The population in Gauteng over the past 25 years of democracy has doubled and patient visits have more than tripled. The over 40 Primary Health Care facilities and seven hospitals constructed in this period have proved not enough to meet demands.

“The progress being made with the Polokwane Academic Hospital will both help the patients from Limpopo access specialized quality services closer to home and on the other hand relieve the high demand on DGMAH,” said MEC Ramokgopa. –