Severe overcrowding at Thelle Mogoerane Hospital psychiatric ward

Today, I conducted an oversight inspection of the psychiatric ward at the Thelle Mogoerane Hospital in Vosloorus together with DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Health, Jack Bloom.

The purpose of the oversight inspection was to assess the quality of service rendered to psychiatric patients and the state of mental healthcare facilities at this hospital.

This hospital’s psychiatric ward is facing a serious challenge of overcrowding.

It has only one psychiatric ward which can accommodate 10 males and 10 females.

There is an overflow of psychiatric patients being admitted at this hospital. Some of the psychiatric patients had to be placed in ordinary wards endangering the lives of ordinary patients.

The hospital staff are doing their best despite working under tremendous strain and being understaffed.

There is lack of support from both national and provincial health departments to manage the overflow of patients at this hospital.

Three psychiatric patients have died of unnatural causes at this hospital and we will be making a follow up with the MEC for Health Gwen Ramokgopa to ascertain the progress of th investigation into their deaths. We will ensure that  those implicated in the death of three psychiatric patients are held accountable.

This clearly shows that the uncaring and failing ANC-led Gauteng administration has not learnt from the Life Esidimeni tragedy where 144 psychiatric patients died.

If they had learnt from Esidimeni tragedy, they would have prioritised care and services of the psychiatric patients in this province.

This indicates that the failing  ANC-led Gauteng administration cares little about the lives of psychiatric patients and they can no longer be trusted in taking care of them.

Where the DA governs, we prioritise the care of our most vulnerable members of the society. In order to ensure that quality health care service is rendered Gauteng residents should vote against the party that has killed psychiatric patients and vote for change that can only be brought by the DA.

East Rand Hospital Packed With Patients

Thelle Mogoerane Hospital

The Thelle Mogoerane Hospital in Vosloorus (formerly the New Natalspruit Hospital) is experiencing very high numbers of patients who have filled all the beds in most departments.

This is putting great strain on both staff and patients.

Relatives are also distressed by a broken switchboard so they can’t get through to the hospital to ask how patients are doing.

It appears that the onset of cold weather has led to a dramatic increase in sick patients, many of whom are from neighbouring provinces.

The Gauteng Health Department needs to step in urgently with extra resources to help this embattled hospital, and some patients may need to be transferred to other hospitals.


Media enquiries:

Jack Bloom MPL

DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Health

082 333 4222

[Image source]

Thelle Mogoerane Hospital Short Of 382 Staff

The Thelle Mogoerane Hospital in Vosloorus (formerly New Natalspruit) is struggling to operate with a shortage of 382 staff.

This information was revealed by Gauteng Health MEC Qedani Mahlangu in response to my questions in the Gauteng Legislature.

So far this year 86 staff members have left the hospital, including 42 resignations.

According to Mahlangu, staff were lost because of the workload and public transport problems.

The hospital has a total staff of 1683, so more than one in five posts is vacant.

Worse affected is the nursing department, with 198 vacancies, followed by administration with 87‚ allied with 57‚ and 46 vacancies for doctors.

This is putting tremendous strain on the remaining staff, which negatively affects patient care.

Patients wait for 1 hour and 26 minutes at the Accident and Emergency (General) Department.

Bed occupancy is generally high, including 104% in the medical wards and 92% at the surgical and step-down wards.

This hospital has been plagued by problems since it was opened in in the new premises in August last year.

Management needs to be improved to attract new staff to this hospital which urgently needs to fill all its vacancies.


Media enquiries:

Jack Bloom MPL

DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Health

082 333 4222

[Image source]

Tragic Death After Clinic Injection Needs Investigation

Nonhlanhla Nyembezi

The tragic death of 23-year-old Nonhlanhla Nyembezi after receiving an injection at the JD Dumane Clinic in Vosloorus in the East Rand needs to be investigated.

Nyembezi visited the clinic with flu-like symptoms and was given an injection, following which her condition deteriorated when she returned home.

She was rushed back to the clinic by ambulance on Sunday 12 July and later transferred to the New Natalspruit Hospital where she died the next day.

Need For Better Public Health Service

Her body lay in the mortuary for a week because the family insisted that a post-mortem be done, and this was only granted after pressure was applied, including my own efforts on their behalf.

The family suspect that she was given the wrong injection. Another possibility is that she had an allergic reaction which should have been picked up and treated far earlier.

The family has not been treated well in this matter and answers are needed why a young lady has died in these circumstances.

There are far too many complaints of this nature which highlights the general need for better treatment and communication in our public health service.


Media enquiries:

Jack Bloom MPL

DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Health

082 333 4222

[Image source]

Bloom Barred from Natalspruit Hospital

Last week, on Thursday 2 April, I was barred by security guards from doing an inspection visit to the new Natalspruit Hospital in Vosloorus.Jack Blom DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Health

Head of security Mr Vusi Mkhize appeared to be waiting for me as I had announced earlier in the week that I was going to visit the hospital.

Verbal Exchange

He stopped me and my colleague, Dr Neil Campbell MPL, at the car park, saying that he had to ask management permission for us to visit.

When we persisted we were stopped at the security gates and a man came out and told us very rudely that we could not enter.

He called Neil Campbell “a child” and waved his finger threateningly, telling us to “go to hell” after identifying himself as Dan Molefe.

Part of the verbal exchange is captured on a recording I made on my cellphone (available on request).


The exchange goes like this:

Mkhize – you must come with an appointment here

Campbell – No, you do not need an appointment

Mkhize – I won’t allow you to come in

Campbell – Get your finger out of my face

Molefe – I am saying you are not going to tell me what to do

Campbell – Get your finger out of my face

Mkhize – I will not allow you to come in … make arrest … You are not going to take my name …

Molefe – You take mine, Dan Molefe, take mine, I am the one to talk to you, I am saying to you, you go to hell


Visit to Natalspruit Hospital

It is utterly appalling that we were barred so aggressively from doing our jobs as elected representatives in checking up conditions at this hospital.

The reason I was visiting is because Health MEC Qedani Mahlangu had claimed at a sitting on Tuesday 31 March that the Electronic Document Management System was working well at the hospital, and that inpatients only faced a 13 minute wait, and outpatients a 45 minute wait.

I replied that this was not my observation when I visited the hospital in January this year, where I saw long queues and patients who said it was better at the old Natalspruit Hospital. I then said that I would visit the hospital to see for myself

Click here to view Hansard transcript.

Hide and Seek

What are they trying to hide at the hospital by barring my visit?

Last year in July I was escorted out of the Helen Joseph Hospital because the Health MEC’s office said that I did not have permission to be there.

In previous years I have been prevented from entering other hospitals, including Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital where my photograph was posted at the entrances.

The previous Speaker Lindiwe Maseko and the former Integrity Commissioner Jules Browde have endorsed my right to make unannounced visits to hospitals.

This latest incident reflects badly on Gauteng Premier David Makhura who says that he and his MECs will make unannounced visits, but allows his Health MEC to obstruct me in this matter.

I will be demanding answers about the poor behaviour of staff at the Natalspruit Hospital in barring us, and I will insist that every MPL has the right to make unannounced visits in terms of the Constitution so that we can see for ourselves what is happening in public institutions.


Media enquiries:

Jack Bloom MPL

DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Health

082 333 4222

[Image source]