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By Citizen Reporter


Pretoria old age home-owner blames hospital for resident’s death

It is argued that the deceased's death could have been made more comfortable at the hospital. WARNING: GRAPHIC IMAGES.

A Pretoria west resident has been left dissatisfied with the service received at a state hospital recently.

Ronel van Dyk, co-owner of retirement village Uncle Ben’s Den claimed that the Steve Biko Academic hospital did not admit one of her residents, whose condition it said “did not look serious”.

She said the hospital could have made his death “more comfortable” and “could have provided him with medication he did not have at home”, she told Pretoria Moot Rekord.

ALSO READ: Steve Biko hospital faces possible bacteria nightmare

Frederik Senekal arrived at Uncle Ben’s Den at the end of November last year.

He had face cancer.

Ronel van Dyk from Uncle Ben’s Den. Photo: Kayla van Petegem

“The person he was living with at the time could not take care of him anymore as she also had cancer,” Van Dyk said.

She said Senekal had an appointment at the plastic surgery department of the hospital on January 21.

Senekal would have apparently received the results of a scan he took at a previous appointment.

“When we got there, the department was closed and we had to reschedule the appointment for 21 February,” she said.

“The nurses told me that they were not going to admit him because he did not look serious and that they were not going to give any attention to it.”

Van Dyk explained that Senekal’s face was about 90% covered in cancerous growths and his nose bled daily.

Frederik Senekal had a cancerous growth on his face. Photo: Supplied

“This is why I could not understand why they said that he did not look serious. He was in terrible pain,” she said.

On the night of Senekal’s death, Van Dyk said his nose started bleeding again.

“Usually my staff is able to stop it quickly, but it did not stop at all,” she said.

“We had to call an ambulance to take him to hospital – but it was already too late.”

Van Dyk argued that Senekal should have been admitted the day he came to the hospital.

The hospital could not give Pretoria Moot Rekord a comment, saying that it would interfere with doctor-patient confidentiality.

Hospital CEO Dr. Mathabo Mathebula added, however, that the complaint would be investigated.

“We will be following up to remedy the process if found to not be in accordance with the best quality of care,” she said.

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