Long-awaited hospital opened in Trompsburg

2017-06-21 06:02

The DA in the Free State has welcomed the official opening of the Albert Nzula District Hospital in Trompsburg.

Reported to have cost the provincial government R380 million, the hospital officially opened on Thursday (15/06).

The multi-million rand facility in the small town next to the N1 in the Xhariep Region was opened by Premier Ace Magashule and the MEC for Health, Butana Komphela.

“The DA is pleased that the people of the Xhariep District will be able to access improved medical services here,” said Mariette Pittaway, DA member of the provincial legislature.

“As part of our commitment to ensuring the delivery of quality public health care to those who need it in the Free State, the DA will continue to engage the Free State Department of Health to ensure that the hospital is brought to full capacity, including a specialist trauma unit, as soon as possible.”

The hospital was completed almost five years ago, but remained closed reportedly due to a number of factors. Among these are infrastructure drawbacks and the hiring of staff at the state-of-the-art hospital.

Earlier the Department of Health reported that 165 vacancies had been advertised for the hospital.

These vacancies included those of the chief executive officer, head of administration, head of nursing, the head of clinical services, nursing staff, medical officers, clerical staff, security staff and cleaners.

Mondli Mvambi, department spokesperson, said no graduate student doctors currently studying in Cuba have been appointed as yet to work at the new hospital.

“For those students who are visiting in July, no students will work in Trompsburg for their electives during three weeks in August. We only use regional and academic hospitals, including national hospitals, for student doctors,” said Mvambi.

Magashule announced in February last year that 201 students were studying medicine in Cuba and that the Free State government was paying for their studies. He said 133 of them were destined to study Medicine at the Peoples’ Friendship University while others were to study Nuclear Science at other universities in Russia.

This concerted effort by the provincial government came in the wake of an exodus of 177 doctors in 2015.

In February 2015, a number of Free State doctors had highlighted shocking management failures and hospital conditions in an open letter which found its way onto various media platforms.

  • The new hospital is named after Albert Nzula, who was born in 1905 in Rouxville.

He obtained a teaching qualification at Bensonvale in Herschel in the Eastern Cape and at Lovedale, where he qualified as a teacher.

He served as secretary of the Industrial and Commercial Workers’ Union (ICU) and also worked with the Communist Party of South Africa (CPSA), which he joined in August 1928.

Nzula died of pneumonia in exile in Moscow on 17 January 1934.

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