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By Getrude Makhafola

Premium Journalist

‘Instagrammer’ plastic surgeon in hot water for skipping work at Baragwanath hospital (PICS)

Gauteng department of health says it has started conducting an investigation against Dr. Monaisa.

Celebrity plastic surgeon Dr Brian Monaisa has been accused of missing work, sometimes for months on end at Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital, preferring to run his private practice and travel the world.

Sources at the Soweto facility alleged that the medic draws a salary from the State but is never at work, leaving his job to overworked juniors.

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The insiders allege that while others work the long shifts at one of the country’s busiest public hospitals, Monaisa records his world-wide travels and the clientele that visit his private practice.

According to his Instagram account, the plastic surgeon specialises in body contouring and tummy tucks, among other things.

His work is in the media spotlight, having been interviewed on radio, television and various news sites.

Gauteng Health Department launches probe

Last week, hospital management couldn’t locate Monaisa after The Citizen sent questions regarding his continued absence to the Gauteng Health Department.

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The department did not reply to emailed questions, except to say that a preliminary investigation against Monaisa was underway.

“The Gauteng Department of Health has noted allegations against Dr Monaisa with concern, and has immediately started conducting preliminary investigations.

“Please note that Dr Monaisa works at the Plastic Surgery department at Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital that is headed by the Charlotte Maxeke Johannesburg Hospital.

“The two institutions are currently in consultation and investigating the matter.”

‘This is fraud’

Meanwhile, his colleagues at the hospital alleged that he has been at work for no more than 10 days since the beginning of this year.

Instead, Monaisa looks after his practice and travels when he is supposed to be reporting for work at Baragwanath.

“He is meant to be at work, but he does not arrive weeks on end. He leaves junior surgeons to operate on their own.

“He should be at work but he is posting on his Instagram, sometimes from African countries such as Tanzania and also Europe,” said one staffer.

Another insider alleged that management allowed Monaisa to “get away with fraud for far too long”.

“The human resources unit at Baragwanath says nothing. They keep letting him get away with it despite complaints. This is fraud.

“Other doctors are there and work, he is the only one who is never around. At one [point he] stayed away for months last year, also without getting that signed off,” said the healthcare worker.

The insiders insisted on anonymity for fear of reprisal.

‘I know nothing’

Meanwhile, his Instagram account depicts his world travels – “mornings in Paris”, visits to high end overseas art galleries and his work at his aesthetics clinic, Marang.

When contacted for a comment on the allegations, Monaisa said “he knew nothing”.

“I cannot comment, I know nothing about what you’re talking about.

“Yes, I am a plastic surgeon at Baragwanath Hospital, but I don’t know what you are talking about.

“I do not even know if you are who you say you are,” he said before cutting off the phone call.

Public Protector roped in

A separate complaint against the medical professional, which was seen by The Citizen, was laid with the Public Protector.

In the complaint, a whistleblower alleges that:

  • Dr. Monaisa does not report for duty.
  • He spends two to three weeks without coming to work at any given time.
  • Does not assist junior surgeons in the theatre, leaving the juniors to do complicated operations on their own to the detriment of patients and general healthcare at the facility.

On 19 March, the Public Protector wrote to the hospital CEO Dr Nkele Lesia “to deal with your customer or service delivery complaint against the hospital”.

In the letter, Lesia is requested to attend to the complaint and report back to the office of the Public Protector within 90 days.

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