North West Health should absorb 300 nursing graduates to stem staff shortages. That’s according the provincial health workers’ union, Health & Other Services Personnel Trade Union of South Africa (Hospersa).
In an ideal world 364 trainee nurses graduating should immediately be absorbed by the health sector due to a dire shortage of nurses in the province – but many remain unemployed.
Mzukisi Jam from North West Hospersa says that they are still experiencing a lot of staff shortages.
“The only answer that we are getting is that the department does not have funds because it’s been placed under administration. Is the program really useful if we are going to train people just to pack them at home without giving them jobs at the end of the day?”
The graduates say they are just what the department needs to turn things around at clinics and hospitals.
One nursing graduate says, “I think we should bring a completely new breed of nurses that are going to show commitment and persevere under the current circumstances.”
“The thing that I can put to the health services is that is for me it is to stop complaining and do my work – so that at the end of the day I achieve what I want.”
Patients at Tshepong Hospital, in Klerksdorp agree that more nurses are just what the doctor ordered.
Tshepong hospital patients say that there is a need to increase staff like nurses, sisters and doctors as well.
“The thing is that they are very few because we spend much time here. Even when you see them they are here but the line is not moving. I mean, I came here at seven and I just left the place much later now.”
North West Health MEC, Dr Magome Masike promised to heed calls to absorb more nursing graduates.
“This is going to assist us to make sure that places that do not have nurses, especially in remote areas, will obviously get some nurses coming. So they are going to do co-operative services, and be placed where there is a need. In other words we will not be able to say go to the nice places. We go to places where there is a need.”
Meanwhile, 56 more nursing students Will be graduating from the North West University in October bringing the number to 420.