63 mental patients successfully transferred, says Ramokgopa
The MEC confirmed the mental patients had been transferred to the selected service providers, being Clinix Selby Park Hospital and Life Esidimeni.
Dr Gwen Malegwale Ramokgopa, Gauteng health MEC. Picture: Tracy Lee Stark
The Gauteng department of health announced on Wednesday that 63 mental patients had been transferred from the various NGOs to date in line with the health ombudsman’s recommendations.
This after Professor Malegapuru Makgoba earlier revealed that more than 100 patients died following a transfer from Life Esidimeni to 27 unlicensed NGOs last year.
Among some of Makgoba’s recommendations was that remedial action be instituted in 45 days and that the Office of Health Standards Compliance’s CEO be updated on the progress thereof.
Health MEC Dr Gwen Ramokgopa also announced that two service providers, Clinix Selby Park Hospital and Life Esidmeni, were selected to provide inpatient services to the transferred mental patients.
“Both facilities have been licensed to provide a private health establishment in line with the Mental Health Care Act,” she said.
Ramokgopa also announced that the transfer of 34 patients, 28 from Rebafenyi House and six from Kopanong Hospital, was done with the families’ consent.
“Of the patient’s families contacted in preparation for the transfer, 33 were successfully reached.
“The social worker’s report indicated that there was a positive response by families to the relocation due to close proximity of the facilities to their homes,” she said.
The MEC also confirmed that a process of accounting for patients transferred from Esidimeni to the various NGOs was under way and that an update would be provided in due course.
“We should also add that 20 medical doctors have been recruited in partnership with the Foundation For Professional Development (FPD) and additional nurses are being recruited. The project team is exploring the option to strengthen the clinical field teams,” she said.