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04 November 2018

Limpopo health vows to clamp down on hospital crime

In just one week, four hospitals in Limpopo were attacked by criminals who targeted doctors and nurses at staff residences.

The provincial health department is tightening security at its facilities after attacks at its hospitals and clinics have threatened the safety of nurses, doctors and patients. The department is concerned about the continued attacks that have resulted in most clinics no longer operating for 24 hours.

Recently, in just one week, four hospitals in the province – George Masebe, Zebediela, Matlala and Helen Franz – were attacked by criminals who targeted doctors and nurses at staff residences.

Shortage of doctors

Health MEC Phophi Ramathuba has appealed to the communities to work with law enforcement agencies, local police forum and security companies to put an end to the crimes.

She said the attacks hinder the recruitment of doctors and other health professionals to work in the province, particularly in rural hospitals.

Many facilities continue to operate with a shortage of doctors, resulting in long queues and the department is still struggling with the supply of medicines to most hospitals and clinics in the province.

The department’s spokesperson Neil Shikwambani said they are going to put a plan in place to curb the spread of criminal attacks.

“We cannot reveal our plans to the media for security reason but we can promise our people that our hospitals and clinics will be safer. The safety of our nurses, doctors and patients is important,” said Shikwambani.  

Shikwambani echoed the MEC’s appeal for community members to work together with the police and the department. “We need to work together to ensure our facilities are safe, because if doctors and nurses stop going to our hospitals and clinics we are the ones who will suffer,” he said. - Health-e News.

Image credit: iStock

 
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