The recent suspension of Professor Ebrahim Variava and the subsequent lifting of his suspension briefly placed the North West Department of Health in the national spotlight – a department that has been under administration for over two years. Marcus Low asks whether the latest developments are just a blip on the department’s road to recovery, or are they symptomatic of still deeply entrenched dysfunction.
The controversial suspension of one of the North West province’s senior clinicians two weeks ago, has been lifted with Professor Ebrahim Variava returning to his post as head of internal medicine at the Klerksdorp Tshepong Hospital in North West.
Doctors in North West province say that only around half of the medicines on the province’s essential drugs list are currently available and that this is severely impacting the level of care they can provide. UFRIEDA HO reports.
Two provinces have said they will force people with COVID-19 to isolate in state facilities irrespective of whether they can safely self-isolate at home. Kathryn Cleary investigates the legal and public health side of these decisions.
MPs this weekend made their 7th pitstop for the public hearings on the National Health Insurance Bill (NHI). With seven provinces covered thus far, only the Western Cape and Gauteng remains.
Spotlight returned to the North West recently to take the temperature of the health system. Sadly, the picture is not pretty. The health system has faced massive protests at health facilities, rampant corruption, staff shortages, drug supply challenges and a myriad other problems. One mother shared her story of loss.
We need to amend the National Health Act (No. 61 of 2003) so as to give the Minister of Health greater powers to intervene in provinces and avert disasters in provinces. If we do not, the Minister’s hands will remain tied when it comes to the next Life Esidimeni, the ongoing oncology crisis, and the non-placement of medical interns, argues Dr Ndiviwe Mphothulo.