The Royal Agricultural showground in Pietermaritzburg has undergone a transformation and has now been launched as a Covid-19 field hospital.
KwaZulu-Natal Premier Sihle Zikalala officially handed over the field hospital to the province’s health department on Sunday.
“This field hospital is giving us 254 isolation beds, which will service uMgungundlovu, Harry Gwala and uThukela districts. Another field hospital, the Durban Exhibition Centre, is being constructed on our behalf by the national Department of Health,” the premier said.
The premier said, over the past few months, KwaZulu-Natal had created 7 111 beds in the province through extensive renovation and repurposing of hospitals as well as the establishment of field hospitals.
“This has put us in a good position to be able to accommodate patients who need to be quarantined while waiting for their test results, and to isolate and treat those who have tested positive,” Zikalala said.
Agreements with hotels
Other facilities that have been repurposed include Clairwood Hospital, Wentworth Hospital, Richmond, Dundee and Niemeyer Hospital.
“In addition to this, the KZN Department of Health has also entered into agreements with a few hotels, B&Bs and resorts, which will give us more than 4 000 beds as and when needed,” the premier added.
Zikalala said 8 893 personnel are also being recruited to serve in the following categories:
Professional nurses – 4 804
Staff nurses – 3 064
Speciality nurses – 151
Ward Clerks – 284
General Orderlies – 590