Gauteng hospital

A photo of South Rand Hospital in Gauteng. Photo: Facebook – South Rand Hospital

Health crisis: 6-day power failure and broken generator at Gauteng hospital

Stuck in a Gauteng hospital for 6 days with a “power failure” and a broken generator. The MEC has now tried to explain the shocking story.

Gauteng hospital

A photo of South Rand Hospital in Gauteng. Photo: Facebook – South Rand Hospital

Public hospitals in our country are the only form of health care available for the majority of South Africans. They are also often scary and horrible places where the sick are left waiting for hours and days on end. Sometimes, they’re even left to sleep on the floor. Gauteng Health MEC Nomathemba Mokgethi has now revealed new details regarding a “6-day power outage” at a Gauteng hospital.

Gauteng hospital left with “6-day power outage” and a broken generator

Once again, the shocking revelation comes in response to questions from DA Gauteng MPL Jack Bloom. Bloom is also the party’s Shadow Health MEC in the province.

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The South Rand Hospital was left with no power from the 4th to the 10th of March. According to Mokgethi, that’s down to “fault HP panels between the municipality and the hospital.” This means that electricity from the municipality could not connect to the hospital.

While all hospitals are meant to have working generators in cases like this, the generator at South Rand clearly had its own massive issues.

“Mokgethi says that the generator did not operate for the full duration of the outage as it is aged and “it is speculated that prolonged utilisation results in it switching off.” I am most concerned that faulty electricity panels led to such a long outage and that the generator did not continuously operate when required.”

Jack Bloom

A public hospital crisis?

While it seems the generator was able to function enough to avoid complete catastrophe, several surgeries were delayed as a result. Other patients had to be transported to other hospitals in and around Johannesburg.

Bloom says that the blame lies squarely at the feet of the Gauteng Infrastructure Department. The DA is furious with the department over the apparent lack of maintenance at several hospitals in the province.

The party wants Gauteng hospital maintenance made the responsibility of hospital CEOs.

Last month, the Health Department hit out at “scrap metal thieves” for delaying the reopening of the Charlotte Maxeke Academic Hospital Emergency Unit. The unit was shut down more than a year ago after a fire ripped through the hospital