DA call to fire lazy emergency staff
07 June 2012 | YADHANA JADOO
“... There must be a management shake-up at all levels to radically improve response times in Gauteng. Poor performers must be fired and replaced with competent people,” DA health spokesman Jack Bloom said.
Mekgwe had tolerated poor management and corruption in the sector for far too long, he added.
“It’s a pity that the emergency services budget was cut by R90 million this year, but every effort must be made to ensure that we have a decent ambulance service to save lives in this province.”
The DA was reacting to the death of 25-year-old Pretoria man, Mlungisi Dlamini, who allegedly waited almost 20 hours for an ambulance to reach him. He died shortly before their arrival.
The MEC was scheduled to have met with provincial health department management and emergency services yesterday, in order to develop a detailed plan to improve ambulance services.
“The MEC had indicated last month that she was concerned over the response times of ambulances and wants a plan to improve it,” provincial health spokesman Simon Zwane said.
Tshwane Municipality also had to provide a full report on the incident, including who was sent to the patient and the time the call had been received, he said.“That report had not yet been received.”
The implementation of a National Health Insurance (NHI) could improve a number of budget problems in the health sector, including ambulance services, according to an expert.
With most services covered by insurance, government could use the rest of its revenue to reallocate resources, and make sure access to ambulance services were guaranteed, said Dr Allen Chia-En Lien, an expert in Taiwan’s NHI plan.
“With NHI there would be a better chance to improve a lot of problems in the public sector.
“The province is also already equipped with technology to deal with service delivery, but on observation it was noticed that the mentalities and training of management needed to be sharpened.”
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