A family from Umlazi in KwaZulu-Natal is demanding answers from the provincial Health Department. This following allegations that 54-year-old Sibongile Diaho was assaulted by healthcare workers at Prince Mshiyeni Memorial Hospital last week.
The family says Diaho had been admitted for the removal of two boils in her stomach area. She is also a diabetic.
The family claims that she was discharged with a gaping wound in her abdomen region.
A video has gone viral on social media, showing the elderly woman at home with marks on her arms and a gaping hole in her stomach.
In the video, Diaho’s daughter is heard alleging that her mother was hit and insulted by nurses.
Diaho’s son-in-law Themba Mkhize says his 63-year-old father-in-law has been struggling to care for his wife at home.
“They say a wound like that is not sewn together. Our concern is the way it keeps leaking…they put a bandage on her and it gets stuck on the wound and digs an even bigger hole. We need help because now it’s been 3 days that she’s been at home and she’s not receiving proper care at home.
They told us that they had tied her down on the bed that’s why she has bruises on her arms which might have been caused by whatever they used to tie her down. When we got home my dad told us that my mum has developed a sore on a hill and bed sores so now we don’t know what to do,” adds Mkhize.
Speaking to the SABC News on Thursday morning, Mkhize said Diaho was collected by an ambulance on Wednesday night to go back to hospital. But, he says, when they got to the hospital this morning, she was still sitting on benches waiting for an available bed.
“What we want to know is how they can release a person in such a state from hospital. We are just surprised that they released her to us in such a state. We are not trained to clean such wounds. We thought as a hospital they’ll keep her and monitor her until she is better. You can’t operate a person like that and then just let them go. My dad has to constantly change the bedding because the wound leaks so much,” explains Mkhize.
Spokesperson for KZN Health, Noluthando Nkosi, says MEC Nomagugu Simelane-Zulu has ordered an investigation into the matter.
“MEC Simelane is severely disturbed by this video and has instructed the HOD to institute an urgent investigation. In the investigation, MEC Simelane says they must probe whether or not the patient was managed correctly in terms of clinical assessment and whether she should have been discharged in her state. Furthermore it needs to establish whether the patient can identify who allegedly assaulted and insulted her.
The MEC stressed that the most important goal at the moment is that the patient receives the urgent medical care that she requires so that she can hopefully recover,” says Nkosi.
Stay tuned to SABC News for further updates on this story.