Stop abusing patients, MEC urges nurses

2016-07-10 09:22
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Komatipoort - In a bid to prevent nurses from assaulting patients who visit rural clinics in Mpumalanga, health MEC Gillion Mashego has instructed all nurses in the province to wear names tags whenever they are on duty.

Mashego's strong instructions follow complaints from the residents of KaMaqhekeza near Komatipoort, who reported that nurses assaulted them whenever they visited the clinic, which was officially handed over to the community on Tuesday.

"We are aware of the nurses that sometimes don't treat patients well. We urge the community members to report such nurses. I promise you that this clinic will be the best, just give me three months. All nurses should put the badges on at all times. This will help when a patient knows the name of the nurse who ill-treated him or her. You should also put complaints in the suggestion box so we can deal with that particular official," he said.

Resident Thoko Nkambule said nurses were arrogant.

"The nurses can be really arrogant, they beat you when you are sick and sometimes when you are in labour pains. The MEC should monitor those who don't put their badges on because they don't want us to know their names," said Nkambule.

A nurse from the KaMaqhekeza clinic admitted that they sometimes work under a lot of pressure.

"They behave like children. We are also human beings like everyone; people should treat us like human beings. When someone comes to deliver they come with anger expecting that we perform a miracle, but they don't want to follow our instruction, so we take other measures to make sure that the baby is born safe. When a baby or the mother dies they always blame the nurses so we try to be strict when a baby is being born," said the nurse, who asked not to be named for fear of victimisation.

Woman forced to give birth in toilet

It is not the first time that Mpumalanga residents have complained about cruel nurses.

On May 10 Matsulu resident Sandile Shongwe, 29, said he took his wife, Ntomfuthi Khoza, 26, to Matsulu Clinic outside Mbombela after she complained of labour pains at around 01:00.

"After calling the ambulance without luck, I decided to call a local taxi to transport my wife because her water broke during the midnight. When we took her inside the clinic the nurses checked her and told us to go back home because the baby was still far from being born. I told them we can't go back home since my wife was in pain. The nurses told me to shut up because they are educated and they know what they are doing," said Shongwe at the time.

Shongwe said when he protested and asked the nurses to allow his wife to stay inside the clinic because it was dark outside, they locked the doors on them.

"The nurses chased us away and locked the door even though my wife clearly in pain. Within two minutes after they chased my wife, she was crying and it was very cold outside and drizzling. As the labour pains became stronger she rushed into a pit toilet where she screamed and delivered the baby. I really cannot start to think what more could have happened to my wife and the unborn child. I am asking Minister Aaron Motsoaledi or the local health MEC [Gillion Mashego] to show some leadership and come down here to demand answers before more lives are lost because of arrogance and negligence," Shongwe added.

Both mother and baby were eventually admitted into the clinic. 

Read more on:    mbombela  |  healthcare

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