Hospital catches alight

2017-06-02 06:00
Smoke bellows from the Port Shepstone Regional Hospital main building.PHOTOS: vusi mthalane

Smoke bellows from the Port Shepstone Regional Hospital main building.PHOTOS: vusi mthalane

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PANDEMONIUM and panic reigned on Monday morning as patients and staff at Port Shepstone Regional Hospital had to be hastily evacuated after a fire broke out in one of the wards.

KZN Department of Health spokesperson Sam Mkhwanazi said there were no casualties or smoke inhalation as a result of the fire, but other reports say three patients were badly burnt.

Emergency services personnel were not immediately able to pinpoint the cause of the fire, but some staff at the scene said the fire started in the IT section after 9am.

A nurse, who is not permitted to talk to the media, said she was working in J ward when the alarm was raised about the fire.

“We assisted patients, some of whom were very weak, to walk out of the ward, and escorted them to the gate,” she said.

Critically ill patients in high care and intensive care units were evacuated and transported to Durban hospitals by helicopter.

DA spokesperson on health, Dr Imran Keeka, said a full investigation needs to be conducted to find the cause of the fire.

“The DA will be interacting with KZN Health MEC, Sibongiseni Dhlomo and his HOD to better understand what has happened today [Monday].

Particularly important are the department’s contingency plans for the care of patients, some of whom are critically ill ICU patients on life support.

The same urgency applies to urgent theatre cases,” said Keeka.

Particularly important are the department’s contingency plans for the care of patients, some of whom are critically ill ICU patients
on life support. The same urgency applies to urgent theatre cases.

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