The director of Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital in Soweto said Monday that mainly matters beyond the control of her staff have led to the postponement or cancellation of more than 870 surgeries this year.
“We have 43 operating rooms and our patient load is quite high. We strive to prioritize emergency surgical procedures,” said CEO Dr. Nkele Lesia.
“We do not cancel emergencies and there are many reasons for cancellation – some of them patient-related, over which we have no influence. For example, if the person is unfit for an operation.”
While the 870 operations canceled or postponed seemed high, Lesia said the hospital performed 24,000 procedures during the same period
< span>Some surgeries were postponed due to time constraints – doctors could only perform a limited number of surgeries per day.
„ However, what is avoidable is the problem of this infrastructure challenge. For example, there was no clean laundry in the hospital,” said Lesia.
“The reason was that the boilers were not working and at the same time the laundry function was not working.”
The infrastructure had to be maintained to support the theater services.
Lesia spoke during a visit to the SA Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) hospital .
The commission carried out an inspection visit to the hospital following reports that the canceled procedures were due to overbooking, equipment problems, maintenance problems and the lack of linen.
SAHRC head in Gauteng Buang Jones said the commission plans to meet with heads of departments of health, finance and infrastructure development on July 13 to discuss challenges in the health sector of the province.
“The purpose of our visit today e [Monday] was to examine factors such as infrastructure, quality of health services, equipment and staff.”
Jones said they had received oral responses from the hospital delegation, with which they had met.
“We will be waiting for formal reports within a week. The Commission intends to convene a meeting with the Heads of Department to see how we can address these challenges and resolve them in a way that safeguards, respects and promotes the right to access health services. “
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