Noxolo Sibiya
2 minute read
21 Jul 2020
8:45 am

City of Tshwane reinstates ambulance service

Noxolo Sibiya

About 300 qualified staff and 78 ambulances were temporarily put out of action.

City of Tshwane emergency services ambulance. Image: Supplied.

The Tshwane emergency services department’s ambulance service is back on the road after the Gauteng health department granted a temporary operating licence.

The ambulance service was put out of action for some two weeks, due to procedural requirements, which left about 300 qualified staff and 78 ambulances being put out of action.

Only the Gauteng emergency management services could render such services in the city during that time.

The problem was that “Johannesburg’s emergency management services had dropped from 60 ambulances to 20 ambulances on a shift”, according to DA Gauteng shadow health MEC Jack Bloom.

Tshwane ESD spokesperson Charles Mabaso said the licence would be valid until the end of January 2021.

“Residents may report life-threatening emergencies on our 107 toll-free number from a cellular phone or landline,” he said.

“The Tshwane emergency service is committed to the synergy in the execution of its operations, governance and interventions in an integrated manner to protect life and property during emergencies and disasters and make the city safe and disaster resilient.”

Members of the Tshwane Special Infection Unit on COVID-19 coronavirus wearing protective face masks pose for a photograph with their Infectious Unit Ambulance after completing a demonstration exercise at the Hatfield Emergency Station in Pretoria on May 4, 2020. (Photo by Phill Magakoe / AFP)

Mabaso had initially said that the metro was allowed to use its fire brigade service.

The Fire Brigade Services Act still gave the department room to still perform ambulance services offered through the fire brigade department subject to Health Act requirements.

Administrator for compliance Lebogang Mahanye has welcomed the reinstatement of the emergency medical/ambulance service.

“We have been providing excellent medical and ambulance services for years with professionalism and the granting of the temporary operating licence until the end of January next year, provides us with the opportunity to continue igniting excellence,” she said.

This article first appeared on Rekord East and was republished with permission.

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