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By Editorial staff

Journalist


Bleak prognosis for our hospitals

The number of patients waiting for surgery at the Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital has jumped from 7 288 last year to 11 194 in 2022.


The bad news for government hospital patients awaiting surgical procedures in Gauteng is that there could be a wait of up to four years before they are operated on. The good news is that they might get bumped up the waiting list as other patients die before they go to theatre.

The tireless Jack Bloom, the Democratic Alliance’s Gauteng spokesperson on health, says it is unacceptable that the prolonged closure of the Charlotte Maxeke Johannesburg Academic Hospital trauma unit and the non-functioning of the Bheki Mlangeni Hospital theatres are being blamed for the long waiting lists.

Bloom says the number of patients waiting for surgery at the Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital has jumped from 7 288 last year to 11 194 in 2022.

ALSO READ: 780 operations cancelled at Charlotte Maxeke Hospital

Health expert Dr Angelique Coetzee says the biggest problem is the lack of hospital beds in intensive care units, which means that operations will be deferred if there is no prospect of post-operative care.

That appalling state of government hospitals will, no doubt, be blamed on the supposed tsunami of illegal foreigners who are clogging up our health facilities. And while there is much truth in that assessment, the reality is also that mismanagement, incompetence and outright looting by the ANC government are also major contributors to the collapse of state health services.

Yet, it appears that the ANC is hell-bent on pushing through with the National Health Insurance – a Utopian vision of a health sector modelled on that of the National Health Service in Britain – where there is a large proportion of free, or subsidised, health care services.

ALSO READ: Charlotte Maxeke Hospital delays are unacceptable

Our medical sector, however, is one of the juiciest ones when it comes to plunder – and ANC cadres have shown themselves adept at siphoning off taxpayer money, but also of showing little remorse about the suffering of ordinary people this may cause. The prognosis is not good.

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