November 25 2013 at 03:59pm By SAPA
Nelspruit - The Mpumalanga health department is in disarray and needs to be investigated, DA provincial leader James Masango said on Monday.
“We read in a local newspaper this morning (Monday) that patients were fed rotten meat at Embhuleni Hospital near Badplaas,” he said in a statement.
The health department had promised to investigate the claims but the Democratic Alliance remained doubtful.
“There has been a lot of cases of negligence and poor management reported and the department has always promised to investigate but at the end we don't see the reports.”
Masango said claims included patients having to sleep in corridors and a lack of food in some hospitals, with patients having to bring their own food.
He said premier David Mabuza had visited a few health facilities last year but conditions had not improved.
“Nothing has come of any of his promises, and the entire exercise was aimed purely to get rid of his political opponent and former health MEC Dr Clifford Mkasi,” Masango said.
The DA wrote to the SA Human Rights Commission last year asking for an investigation and was still waiting for the report.
Mpumalanga health department spokesman Ronnie Masilela confirmed there had been rotten meat at Embhuleni Hospital.
“The department came to know about these serious allegations late yesterday 1/8Sunday 3/8 from the SABC. Upon verifying with the CEO, it was confirmed that the coolroom had problems.”
“We are therefore not in a position to confirm whether our patients were served rotten meat. We are awaiting a comprehensive report which will assist in this regard.”
Masilela said the department had experienced food shortages in the past, but the problem lay with the service provider and had long been solved.
“We are passionately working on improving on staff attitude in some facilities. It therefore remains grossly incorrect to suggest that the state of health in Mpumalanga is in disarray,” he said.