13 new hospitals for Gauteng

Tembisa hospital.


This information was revealed in a written reply by Gauteng Health MEC Qedani Mahlangu to Democratic Alliance (DA) Gauteng Shadow MEC for Health Jack Bloom’s questions regarding improvements within the health sector. However, the skeptical Bloom said private hospitals require a permit from the Gauteng Department of Health, which has, in previous years, refused some major hospital applications, with preference only given to township areas.

In his response to Bloom’s statement, spokesperson for the department, Steve Mabona said, “The department has no preference areas except that the organisation that applies for a licence has to prove that there is a need to build a hospital or clinic in the area they have identified, which is measured in terms of the existing bed usage and the availability of staff that will be required by the said facility.”

Meanwhile on a lighter note, Bloom said, “The increase in private hospital beds is good news as greater competition should bring down prices and clinics will bring down the cost of operations as they do not have the expense of keeping patients overnight.”

He said the new beds would bring the total number of private hospital beds to more than 16 000 in Gauteng, and any spare beds could be used to assist public patients, as recently mooted by Mahlangu. Bloom also stated that there were at least 40 private health facilities that have been approved and not yet built in Gauteng. This is inclusive of hospitals, day clinics and sub-acute facilities – which are comprehensive and cost-effective inpatient programmes for patients who have suffered an acute illness – which all amount to almost 2 500 beds.

In addition to new hospitals which are to be built, the hospitals in the Joburg North area that will be affected positively include Netcare Waterfall City’s day facility, which will receive 50 new beds, while the sub-acute section of the hospital will receive 56 new beds.

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Aphiwe Boye

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