Home News Hospital staff fear for their lives after patient stabs doctors

Hospital staff fear for their lives after patient stabs doctors

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Staff employed at Robert Sobukwe Hospital are concerned about their safety after a patient entered the casualty ward on Friday evening and allegedly stabbed two young doctors

Two doctors were injured after they were allegedly stabbed by a patient at the casualty unit at Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe Hospital on Friday night. Picture Soraya Crowie

Staff employed at Robert Sobukwe Hospital are concerned about their safety after a patient entered the casualty ward on Friday night and allegedly stabbed two young doctors.

It is believed that the suspect, who was armed with a knife, approached a doctor while she was in the process of examining another patient and stabbed her in the arm, after which he proceeded to stab another doctor who was standing close by, also in her arm.

Employees indicated that there were not enough security guards on duty, especially at the casualty ward.

“It was only after hearing the commotion that security rushed to the scene to subdue the patient who was displaying violent behaviour. The police were called to the scene.

“It is shocking that a patient was allowed to freely walk into the casualty unit while he was in possession of a dangerous weapon. The injuries inflicted by the stab wounds, could have been fatal and staff do not feel safe. The doctors had to be booked off while there is a shortage of staff.”

Kimberley police spokesperson Captain Tessa Jansen said on Saturday they were investigating three charges of attempted murder.

“The incident took place on Friday, September 17 at approximately 8.30pm. The police attended a complaint at the Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe Hospital after a male patient allegedly stabbed two medical doctors and another female patient with a knife.”

She indicated that the suspect was arrested and placed under hospital guard, until he was discharged.

“He is expected to appear in the Kimberley Magistrates Court soon on three charges of attempted murder. Police investigations are continuing.”

Spokesperson for the Department of Health Lebogang Majaha said the acting head of Department Riaan Strydom visited the Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe hospital last night, to meet with the staff on duty, following the stabbing incident involving two medical doctors on duty.

He indicated that the patient was prone to substance abuse.

“According to the preliminary report received, – a known male patient prone to substance abuse had an epileptic fit, while he was being treated at the casualty section. The patient became verbally aggressive towards the staff, resulting in the stabbing of the two female doctors. The security officers suppressed the aggressive patient and doctors administered sedation.”

He indicated that another patient was involved in the scuffle with the suspect but did not sustain any injuries.

Majaha stated that the two medical doctors were recovering well and receiving psychosocial support.

“The SAPS responded swiftly and confiscated the weapon used in the alleged incident. The department will continue to work closely with SAPS in dealing with this matter.”

He added that the department would conduct safety and security assessments for patients and staff at all health facilities.

“The department will install additional metal detectors at all 24 hour health facilities admitting high risk of aggressive patients.”

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