The Democratic Alliance has raised concerns about another hospital in Gauteng that is affected by food disruptions after heavy rainfall this week.
The party said patients at the Charlotte Maxeke Johannesburg Hospital are suffering from food supply disruptions, including bread and dairy products.
Charlotte Maxeke food shortages
DA Gauteng Shadow Health MEC Jack Bloom said the details of the food disruptions were by Gauteng Health MEC Nomathemba Mokgethi in a written reply to his questions in the Gauteng Legislature.
Bloom said the hospital had been without sliced bread since October last year because of contract problems and financial constraints.
In addition, staff had to bake their own scones and rusks, and bread rolls were only delivered from 1 April this year.
Limited food supply
According to Mokgethi, meals are supplied by the Department’s Masakhane Cook Freeze factory, but the hospital is often told that the food supply will be interrupted on very short notice.
Furthermore, “there is limited plates/meal variety for each diet code, and thus there is a lot of repetition of the meals.”
“The factory states that they have supply chain challenges and thus a shortage of stock […] the factory also has challenges with faulty equipment, intermittent water, electricity supply and shortages of staff,” said Bloom.
Bloom said the MEC also admitted “the portion sizes of the food types are too small.”
“I am concerned that sick patients are not getting proper nutrition to assist their recovery. The hospital should not be forced to use the poorly managed Masakhane Cook Freeze factory.”
Chris Hani Baragwanath food shortages
Last month, the DA also raised concerns about food running out at the Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital.
Bloom said there had been no bread at the hospital for two weeks and that some doctors and nurses have taken in food to feed starving patients.
However, the Gauteng Health Department denied that Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital has run out of food.
The department said other types of food were served and there was only a short supply of bread which had been resolved and the bread supply capacity improved.