MANAGING an annual budget of R600-million is no mean feat for Health Department district head Tommy Oliver, who spoke frankly to The Herald about the Bay’s healthcare hiccups, as well as its successes.
THE Eastern Cape’s fourth Health MEC since 2008, Sicelo Gqobana admits that the task of reforming a department which has become endemically flawed and crippled by corruption is an immense one.
WHILE all four of the Bay’s hospitals have had their budgets increase with inflation in recent years, top officials in the department admit this is not enough, as they are overspending by hundreds of millions of rand.
MORE than a third of the critical and most specialised positions at Nelson Mandela Bay’s four state hospitals are vacant – and no one seems to want the jobs.
AN injured teenage boy lies on a wooden bench in a busy corridor as a nurse hooks his drip to a door handle. This is one of the first scenes that greets The Herald during an unannounced informal inspection of Nelson Mandela Bay’s four state hospitals.
WHILE Nelson Mandela Bay’s two trauma units are operating smoothly despite staff shortages, the city’s ambulance service is in chaos, with vehicles failing to reach the desperately ill people who need them most.
MEDICAL records are disappearing at an alarming rate from the Port Elizabeth Hospital Complex – many of them allegedly at the instruction of unscrupulous lawyers who want to sue the state on behalf of patients.
NELSON Mandela Bay state hospitals are facing negligence lawsuits to the tune of more than R100-million – mostly from parents whose babies had died or were severely disabled following allegedly flawed birthing operations at Dora Nginza Hospital.
A team of Herald reporters probed the state of Nelson Mandela Bay's Healthcare system and found that it is on the brink of collapse.
ONE of the city’s most controversial units, the maternity ward at Dora Nginza Hospital has made headlines for all the wrong reasons following horror stories from mothers who blame staff for complications arising with the birth of their babies.
TENDING to young children who have been burnt beyond recognition is not for the faint-hearted, and Sister Phindiwe Booi, who has been with Nelson Mandela Bay’s paediatric burns unit for 30 years, admits she has shed her fair share of tears.
With the most critical state hospitals in the Bay falling under the Port Elizabeth Hospital Complex, Brian Hayward asked acting chief executive, Solly Pretorius, some tough questions.
PUBLIC healthcare in Nelson Mandela Bay is facing an unprecedented collapse, with widespread allegations of preventable deaths, desperate communities being left in the lurch by under-resourced clinics and an exodus of highly skilled specialists.
THE surge in the number of people dying from Aids and HIV-related illnesses is crippling Nelson Mandela Bay hospitals – and doctors say it will only get worse.
NELSON Mandela Bay is losing the war on tuberculosis, with less than a third of infected patients recovering from the disease.
IT has been a tough journey for South Africa’s longest-surviving dialysis patient, Port Elizabeth resident Amanda van Wijk. She has had two kidney transplants, more than 20000 hours hooked up to dialysis machines and mountains of medication.
OVERWORKED Port Elizabeth doctors are being forced to make “life or death” decisions about who gets to use specialised equipment such as dialysis machines.
MOTHERWELL residents have closed down an understaffed municipal clinic after health officials failed to deliver on promises made two years ago.
COMMUNITY clinics in Nelson Mandela Bay are failing the people they serve due to a lack of staff and equipment, poor facilities and under qualified staff who regularly misdiagnose patients. The city’s 50 clinics are on average 50% understaffed and have just five full-time doctors to aid the 300-odd nursing staff.