MARAPONG — On Sunday 7 July, the MEC of Limpopo Department of Health, Dr Phophi Ramathuba, led a delegation to the official opening of a 24-hour healthcare centre in Marapong.
Different speakers shared warm messages of support and encouragement to the community to take care of their health facility – emphasising that damaging of the facility will under no circumstances be tolerated.
Dr Ramathuba said anyone who would want a health care centre to operate less than 24 hours, will be dealing with her office as Head of the Provincial Department.
“We are committed to serving our communities consistently, and there should be a redistribution of staff to clinics that operate 24 hours from those that don’t.
“It also has to be noted that we continuously engage Treasury to help with more money in the health sector, and the reality is that the department sometimes lacks proper leadership, mainly in operational managing across clinics,” Dr Ramathuba said.
She referred to “warm bodies” as the kind of leaders who go to work as late as possible, do as little as possible and leave as early as possible.
She says the health sector does not need to hire such managers, who spend time in their offices and only give instructions without doing any work.
“Whenever I do unannounced visits, I am shocked to realise that CEOs don’t know the basics and dysfunctional structures at the very same operational centres they work in,” she continued.
Ramathuba further mentioned that the population growth in Lephalale means there have to be enough healthcare services in the area and in her view, there is no need to build another hospital, but to grow the centre bigger and better while ensuring Ellisras District Hospital grows to the level of Regional Hospital.
The Marapong Healthcare Community Centre now operates with 24 staff members that include an operational manager, 12 registered nurses, six staff nurses and a data capturer.
Ramathuba also pleaded with the community to protect healthcare providers, as most nurses currently are wary to work night shifts due to incidents of violence against them.
She also promised to have the facility turned into district level in the coming years.