About 30 members and supporters of the Treatment Action Campaign gathered outside provincial government offices in Cape Town on Thursday to call for better conditions at a city tuberculosis hospital.
In a memorandum handed to Western Cape health MEC Pierre Uys, the TAC said it was easy for patients to obtain illegal drugs and alcohol at the facility - the Brooklyn Chest Hospital.
'Increased risk of cross infection'
The memorandum said patients with multi-drug resistant TB and those with the extreme drug-resistant strain shared communal and waiting areas, increasing the risk of cross infection.
The hospital was still waiting to be accredited as an ARV site by the health department, so patients in need of ARVs had to be transported to other hospitals for treatment. Other problems were understaffing, poor food quality and overcrowding.
But health department spokeswoman Faiza Steyn said that investigations into the conditions at the hospital were undertaken in November last year and steps to improve the services implemented.
"We appointed 58 new staff members, appointed a dietician and social workers," she said. – (Sapa)
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