KZN health MEC to personally perform post-mortems

2017-03-08 14:44
Sibongiseni Dhlomo (Picture: The Witness)

Sibongiseni Dhlomo (Picture: The Witness)

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Durban – KwaZulu-Natal health MEC Sibongiseni Dhlomo will lead by example when he personally performs post-mortems at the Park Rynie State Mortuary on Wednesday.

Dhlomo, a qualified medical doctor with postgraduate forensic pathology training, spoke to News24 moments before he began his work at the mortuary.

He resolved to take on the task after about 12 forensic pathology officers who assist doctors took sick leave at the same time.

"In terms of what happened with the officers, I cannot speak to that at the moment. I am awaiting a report on that. Perhaps they have valid complaints or maybe they do not. I am open to hearing their concerns."

Dhlomo added that as a medical professional he believed the average South African came first no matter the circumstances.

"What I want to do is bring the families that are in mourning some relief and some final peace. I have promised the families that I will do everything humanly possible to ensure they bury their loved ones timeously."

Special permission

Referring to the pathology officers who called in sick, he said: "Sometimes you might find they are aggrieved at certain things we as management ignored. We are not able to indicate [their reasons] exactly until I receive my report. But I would not be aggrieved to such an extent where I withhold my services."

Dhlomo said his concern was the effect the absence of pathology officers was having on those who rely on their services.

"To lose your loved one is traumatic. No family should be this stressed by death. They are in a very sensitive space at the moment. I am here as an MEC but also as a concerned citizen. I want to make sure these people find peace."

Dhlomo said he had to get special permission from KwaZulu-Natal Premier Willies Mchunu.

"Today is a provincial cabinet, but the premier was very understanding and gave me permission to come here. I will be catching up with my official duties as MEC when I am done here."

Dhlomo went on to appeal to public sector medical professionals in the province to always put people first.

"I would just hope our people, whatever job they do, they should know health is a unique sector. It touches the emotions and spirit of the people. These families have too much pain with them.

"Part of what I am doing is relieving this pain and helping them cope with this traumatic loss. I hope some of our members realise our in-house challenges cannot be more than our people are suffering." 

Read more on:    department of health  |  sibongiseni dhlomo  |  durban  |  health

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