The health ombud has investigated the head of Rahima Moosa Mother and Child Hospital in response to complaints and discovered that the hospital’s management was deficient. As reported by News24, after MP Haseenabanu Ismail filed a complaint alleging that staff made pregnant women sleep on the floor, the ombud launched the investigation. The investigation, which lasted over a year, found that hospital staff made pregnant women sit on chairs and sleep on floors due to overcrowding and a lack of beds and space. Furthermore, those who had to sit on chairs and sleep on the floor were not given proper attention for their health condition.
In addition, the investigation substantiated Ismail’s allegation that Rahima Moosa Mother and Child Hospital’s chief executive, Dr Nozuko Precious Mkabayi, did not work full-time to ensure the hospital was functioning effectively. The investigation found that Mkabayi only spent 182 days at the hospital, and there were substantive irregularities regarding her leave.
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The ombud’s investigation also found that the health and dignity of patients and healthcare workers’ well-being were severely affected. Furthermore, the investigation revealed that the Gauteng health department failed to promote and implement relevant human resource policies in a standardised and transparent way, leading to “trust agreements” between supervisors and supervisees that were open to abuse and lacked accountability.
Health Minister Joe Phaahla received a report detailing the ombud’s findings and recommendations at a media briefing in Pretoria. The investigation has sparked widespread outrage and concern for treating expectant mothers at the public hospital.
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