The Edenvale Hospital runs at an average 98% capacity, which often leads to over-crowding in casualty, and needs to be expanded from 230 beds to 450 beds.
This was a major concern expressed by Dr Norman Kearnes, the hospital CEO, during a visit by the Gauteng Legislature’s Health Committee on Thursday last week.
I have seen for myself how patients in casualty lie on the floor or in the corridors because there are not enough beds to be admitted.
Other issues include:
· Small repairs can take months because responsibility was transferred last year to the Infrastructure Development Department e.g. the casualty door has been broken for more than 3 months.
· While there is only a 3% vacancy rate in funded staff posts, the hospital is in desperate need of more doctors and nurses, which means that the official staff establishment should be increased.
· Waiting times are worse in the early morning but are more acceptable later in the day.
· Medicine shortages are dealt with by substitutions or getting from other institutions.
· The hospital scores only 50% on cleanliness according to national health standards.
The hospital budget is R266.6 million, but is expected to spend R340 million by the end of the financial year in March.
The expansion of Edenvale Hospital makes a lot of sense because the local population has grown rapidly.
The 800-bed Tembisa Hospital is horribly over-crowded and it appears that the Kempton Park Hospital will not be re-opened in the near future.
Plans for additional beds at Edenvale Hospital date back to 2006, and should be implemented as soon as possible.
Jack Bloom MPL
DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Health
082 333 4222