The DA in Gauteng has criticised the provincial health department and CEO of Rahima Moosa Hospital Nozuko Mkabayi after a video of unattended pregnant women caused outrage on social media.
The party said the health MEC Nomathemba Mokgethi disclosed in a written reply to its questions in the Gauteng legislature that Mkabayi was appointed in January last year but has only been at the hospital for 182 days and mostly worked remotely.
Mokgethi said Mkabayi, as all senior managers, is allowed to work remotely though she is accessible 24/7 via her cellphone and email and she has “diligently delivered” all tasks handed to her.
The DA called on the department to ensure that essential workers and managers are physically at work to ensure the smooth running of hospitals.
“I am astounded that a hospital CEO is not full-time at the hospital to ensure that everything runs smoothly. No wonder she doesn’t know that pregnant women sleep on the floor and blames opposition parties for staging a video that highlighted this outrageous situation.”
The video was shared by Patriotic Alliance member and City of Joburg health MMC Ashley Sauls.
Mokgethi visited the hospital on Monday to assess the situation.
The department said the hospital has, in the past decade, experienced an increase in patients and stands second only to Baragwanath Hospital in deliveries.
“The Rahima Moosa Mother and Child Hospital has taken note of the complaint and the matter has since been escalated to the Quality Assurance Unit. It is being investigated.
“The hospital has, over the past decade, experienced an increased patient load from 10,000 to 16,000 deliveries a year, which is the second highest in the country after Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital.”
It does not have a policy of turning away patients, the department said, and pledged to find short-term solutions to manage incoming patients while the long-term solution was to increase capacity in the region.