20 December 2018

Violence at Limpopo health facilities on the rise

Some of the clinics in Limpopo province have stopped operating after hours for safety reasons, believing they are vulnerable to attack after hours.

After the recent attacks and robberies at its facilities, the Limpopo Health Department continues to face a spate of violence attacks on health officials on duty.

Recently the department reported that a patient was arrested for assaulting an on-duty nurse at Siloam Hospital, in the Vhembe district. The incident took place just a day after health MEC, Dr Phophi Ramathuba had welcomed the arrest of a man who had assaulted another on duty nurse at Vaalwater Clinic last week. The incident of the man harassing and assaulting a nurse was captured on camera which prompted the MEC to visit the clinic to address the issue.

Responsibility to protect staff and facilities

According to the statement released by the department, the arrested man at Vaalwater Clinic became furious when the nursing staff refused go against health department policy by complying with his demands that they re-issue his companion with a second birth notification form. The department said that birth and death notification forms are issued once only for every individual case to avoid corruption and collusion. During her visit to Vaalwater, Ramathuba reassured the employees that her department is committed to protecting them under any circumstances.

“Community members have a responsibility to protect our staff and facilities, even where they think there are misunderstandings. If they are not satisfied with the kind of service they receive, they need to escalate complaints to us as the authorities so that we deal with them. If someone from the public dares assault them, we will have to have them arrested,” she said.

In recent weeks, several medical doctors have been attacked and robbed in their residences at various hospitals in the province. Some of the clinics in the province have since stopped operating after hours for safety reasons, believing they are vulnerable to attack after hours.

It is still not clear what led to the recent alleged assault against an on-duty nurse at Siloam. -Health-e News.

Image credit: iStock


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