Port Alfred Hospital’s treatment appears to be on everyone lips, due to what looks like poor service often received by patients.
Recently Reverend Wandile Ngcobo came to the TotT office to put a spotlight on what he called “unfair treatment”.
Explaining the nature of his complaint, Ngcobo said he took his wife (whose name he did not want to mention), to the hospital in the morning around 5am. She was well attended to by the nurses, but the problem started when he was referred to doctors.
The concerned man stated that his wife went to have a blood sugar test and was immediately attended to by the nurses. He praised the nurses, but said that once he was referred to the doctors, together with other people, they waited for ages.
After seeing no progress, Gcobo decided to act on the situation, but his efforts made no difference. “I went to launch a complaint to a lady in the casualty ward. She said doctors were in a meeting,” he said.
More disappointing was that nobody knew when the meeting was going to finish. It was at this stage that Gcobo decided to put the issue in the public domain through TotT.
“People are neglected there. Why is there no standby doctor when the meeting is scheduled to be long, Ngobo asked. “You cannot leave patients stranded like this” he added.
From the complainant’s point of view this is the result of poor planning. “There must be proper planning,” he suggested.
According to Gcobo, history was repeating itself, and he felt that public intervention could solve the problem. “This is not the first time this has happened. On August 9 we were attended to at 4pm. We need other stakeholders together with community leaders to intervene,” he said.
Ngcobo believes that the community keeping silent about the situation makes it acceptable. “If nothing happens nothing will change,” he said.
Although he felt neglected he did not overlook the efforts of the nurses and spoke fondly of them. “Nurses are doing their jobs. I wish they had more power.”
Provincial health spokesman Lwandile Sicwetsha did not respond to numerous e-mails sent to him.