Shortage of Incubators: Babies Placed in Boxes at Mahikeng Hospital, Healthcare Crisis Revealed

…By Roland Peterson for TDPel Media. The Democratic Nursing Organisation of South Africa (DENOSA) in North West has stated that the issue of newborn babies being placed in cardboard boxes instead of incubators or cribs at Mahikeng Provincial Hospital does not require an investigation.


According to DENOSA, this situation reflects the daily reality faced by healthcare workers in healthcare service centers due to the scarcity of equipment and resources.

Investigation Initiated by Health MEC

Madoda Sambatha, the Health MEC in North West, has initiated an investigation to determine the duration during which newborn babies were placed in boxes at the hospital’s neonatal intensive care unit.

Shortage of Incubators and Cribs in Mahikeng Hospital


DENOSA reveals that the neonatal intensive care unit at Mahikeng Provincial Hospital has experienced a chronic shortage of 20 incubators and cribs for an extended period.

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Unfortunately, there is no indication that these much-needed resources will be provided.

Currently, the unit possesses only 25 incubators, while on the day in question, there were over 55 babies in need of care, attended to by a mere seven nurses.

Responsibility for Procurement Lies with Management

Reuben Molete, DENOSA Provincial Secretary in the North West, emphasizes that the responsibility for procuring incubators and cribs lies with the hospital management, not the nurses.


Molete asserts that the matter of acquiring these resources has been with procurement for a significant period, urging the Health MEC to focus on the individuals responsible for ensuring the procurement of incubators and cribs.

Struggling Healthcare Workers and Insufficient Facilities

Due to Mahikeng Hospital’s reputation as a provider of the highest level of care in the Ngaka Modiri Molema District, healthcare workers are often faced with difficult choices when the facility reaches capacity.

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They must either turn patients away or accommodate them in unsuitable units for their conditions.

Alternatively, patients are referred to other facilities with similar levels of care, which are located two hours away at Tshepong Hospital Complex in Klerksdorp or Job Shimankana Tabane Hospital in Rustenburg.

DENOSA expresses concern that the management’s surprise over this incident is merely an attempt to scapegoat dedicated healthcare workers who constantly face challenging conditions, including reduced budgets for procuring equipment and resources.

Delayed Procurement of Essential Incubators and Cribs

Moreover, DENOSA highlights the urgent need for an investigation into why the procurement of essential incubators and cribs has taken so long, despite previous indications of their necessity.

In conclusion, DENOSA’s response to the incident of newborn babies being placed in boxes at Mahikeng Provincial Hospital draws attention to the ongoing challenges faced by healthcare workers due to equipment shortages and resource limitations.

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The organization calls for immediate action to address the procurement issues surrounding incubators and cribs, in order to ensure the provision of adequate care for newborns in the future.


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About the Author:

Roland Peterson is a seasoned and experienced writer with over 10 years of experience in the field. He has a special interest in news and has been writing about current events for many years. When he’s not busy writing, Roland enjoys spending time in nature and can often be found exploring the great outdoors. He also loves to relax and unwind by sipping coffee at his favorite coffee shop (Manhattan Espresso) while brainstorming ideas for his next article on TDPel Media. Roland is a dedicated writer who is passionate about delivering informative and engaging content to his readers. He lives in New York, USA.

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