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Patients losing patience over surgery backlog

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Patients at Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe Hospital in Kimberley are frustrated due to the backlog of various surgeries the state facility is currently experiencing.

Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe Hospital in Kimberley. Picture: Soraya Crowie

PATIENTS at Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe Hospital in Kimberley are frustrated due to the backlog of various surgeries the state facility is currently experiencing.

A number of the frustrated patients pointed out that they have been admitted to the hospital for weeks while they wait for their surgical procedures.

Many also claim that they have to endure ill-treatment by staff members during this time.

One of the patients said that she has been in the hospital for over a month waiting for surgery and has lost her job because of this.

The hospital was expected to have a “marathon” of surgeries this past weekend, but it did not materialise due to a shortage of doctors.

The disgruntled patients said they had to skip three meals on Friday and Saturday in preparation for the anticipated surgery that never materialised.

One of the patients said they were only informed on Saturday, after skipping their third meal, that there were no doctors to perform the surgeries.

“We were so excited to finally go for surgery because it meant we would be able to go home thereafter,” the patient said.

“We had our last meal on Friday morning, in preparation for surgery. The nursing staff had already prepared our schedules … We starved ourselves for no reason.”

They further complained that their linen is not changed regularly, while some patients in the wards are bedridden.

Northern Cape Department of Health spokesperson Lebogang Majaha said the department will convene a press briefing on Thursday to give an update on the intervention plan.

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