#HospitalHealthCheck: R1 billion in accruals hits Emergency Medical Care

#HospitalHealthCheck: R1 billion in accruals hits Emergency Medical Care
by Jane Sithole MPL – DA Mpumalanga Spokesperson on Health

Date: 30 May 2018
Release: Immediate

Today, the Democratic Alliance (DA) conducted an oversight inspection to various hospitals in Nelspruit and Barberton following complaints from the public that ambulances arrive without vital, life-saving equipment.

Emergency medical care personnel told the DA that they have resorted to buying vital medical equipment such as high blood pressure machines with their own medical aids due to the department failing for provide such equipment.

The medical personnel also stated that every year, they are told to wait for the new budget that will allow for equipment to be purchased, however, the Department of Health has reduced the machinery and equipment budget by more than R7 million for the 2018/19 financial year.

In one of the hospitals that we inspected, we found that the area was allocated four ambulances but only two are operational. The other two weren’t operational due to mechanical problems. Many of the ambulances had travelled more than four hundred thousand kilometres and posed a risk to patients and medical personnel.

The DA has been calling for a full audit on all ambulances and we once again call on Health MEC, Gillion Mashego to speed up the process of auditing all EMS vehicles to check how many ambulances they have in the province, and how many are road worthy so that the non-road worthy ambulances can be scrapped before it’s too late.

The DA further appeal to MEC Mashego to reprioritise his budget and ensure that service providers are paid within 30 days as per the PFMA regulations. This will reduce the current accruals of over a R1 billion which are already negatively impacting on the 2018/19 financial year.

The reduction of time between injury and medical care is one of the most important elements in prevention of death or permanent disability. MEC Mashego needs to act now before the lack of fully equipped ambulances causes more strain on the people of Mpumalanga.

Without proper equipment, ambulances in Mpumalanga have been reduced to just transport for people to get to hospital. This needs to stop now. Healthcare in Mpumalanga needs to become a priority for this ANC-led government.

Media Enquiries

Jane Sithole MPL
DA Mpumalanga Spokesperson on Health
082 854 9711

Dumisile Masuku
Provincial Communications Manager
079 873 7590