Bereaved family receiving support following alleged hospital neglect

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Gauteng’s Health Department says it is providing all possible support to the family of a man who died after he was allegedly ignored by nursing staff at the Steve Biko Academic Hospital in Pretoria.

Five nurses have since been suspended over allegations of gross negligence.

Gauteng’s Health Department says this emanates from an incident last month that was captured on video by a member of the public involving a male patient who had died.

The video has been doing the rounds on social media.

The alleged nursing malpractice at the Steve Biko Academic Hospital has raised concerns about the quality of care provided to patients by some staff in public hospitals.

Gauteng Health Department spokesperson Motalatale Modiba says this is an unfortunate case, and they are doing all in their power to address it.

“The unfortunate incident happens at a time when the Steve Biko Hospital is strengthening interventions to improve patients experience of care. Those measures include the launch of the Gauteng Department of Health’s I Serve with a Smile Campaign, which is a change management programme aimed at improving staff attitudes and the quality of services.”

Modiba says they are providing all the necessary support to the bereaved family.

“Sadly, the patient has since died while in the hospital, and the facility management continues to engage the affected family. It enables redressal processes to unfold. Counselling services have also been offered to the family.”

A patient who chose to remain anonymous was recently admitted to the same hospital for burn wounds.

He has vowed not to go back to Steve Biko after he discharged himself.

He says all went well when he was attended by doctors, but his woes started when the nurses began to care for him. They were shouting at him, and he discharged himself.

The Democratic Nursing Organisation of South Africa (Denosa) has slammed the Gauteng Health Department for suspending the five nurses.

Denosa Tshwane Regional Chairperson Bongani Banda says there are a lot of factors that influence why staff sometimes fail to execute their duties. Banda says departmental heads are also part of the problem.

“We call against the department for how they conduct themselves when these issues are trending on social media platforms. They do not get to mention the systematic failures that compromise these nurses at their working stations. The issue of the shortage of nurses on a daily basis is a matter that has been there for some time. Which the department has never addressed and still seeks not to address. It’s a matter that compromises nurses’ line of duty.”

The deceased have since been laid to rest.

Alleged nursing malpractice at Steve Biko Academic Hospital raises concerns: