The Life Esidimeni Inquest will on Tuesday continue to cross-examine former Gauteng Health Department’s Deputy Director-General for Mental Health Services, Hannah Jacobus.
On Monday, she testified that some NGOs were not able to accommodate mentally ill patients after being transferred as they didn’t have sufficient beds and linen.
A total of 144 of them died from hunger and neglect during the June 2016 marathon transfer from Life Esidimeni facilities.
The inquest was established to determine who should be held criminally liable for the deaths of the patients in 2016 after the Life Esideni Project was shut down.
Jacobus says some patients died while in the care of an unlicensed NGO in Cullinan east of Pretoria.
She testified that NGOs were not assisted financially to set up facilities for the transfer of mentally ill patients from the Life Esidimeni NGOs.
She said only an inspection by department officials would determine if new NGOs were suitable to accommodate patients.
She also testified that NGOs were not funded by the department to set up new facilities.
The inquest was established to determine who should be held criminally liable for the deaths of 144 mental healthcare users in 2016.
According to the Health Ombudsman findings, they died of hunger, neglect and dehydration during and after being transferred from Life Esidimeni to unlawful and ill-equipped NGOs.
A report into Hannah Jacobus’ testimony: