Gauteng health dept pays up

2012-05-02 08:14

Johannesburg - The Gauteng health department has settled in full all debts owed to medical suppliers up to the end of March, an official said on Tuesday.

"(The department) is now moving at speed to implement a turnaround strategy at its medical supply depot," department spokesperson Phumelele Khumalo said.

A total of R874m was paid to medical suppliers last week settling all outstanding accruals from 2011, he said in a statement.

The provincial MEC Ntombi Mekgwe has instructed all efforts be made to improve drug stock holding in the province from the current six weeks to three month.

Khumalo said a meeting with medical suppliers was being planned to discuss working relationships and measures to improve supplies.

Improve controls

Meanwhile efforts were under way to improve controls on the distribution of medicines from the supply depot to hospitals and clinics.

"A review of the business model of the medical supply depot has commenced as part of the department's turnaround strategy."

He said this was a twelve months' project introduced to increase patients' access to medicine, improve warehousing and establish information and communication technologies systems at regional pharmacies.

A provincial pharmaceutical and therapeutic committee of experts was established to monitor and ensure rational use of medicines, Khumalo said.

"The committee will also interrogate scientific evidence for protocols, assist in ensuring the availability of essential drugs and advise the department on drug related matters."

  • Loo - 2012-05-02 08:22

    DO THEY even realize how many companies they bankrupted by not paying them for almost a year ????!!!!!! And Govt says " Pvt enterprise must help empowerment and promote employment" FFS do they realize how empty their words are ???!!!

  • Bless Boswell - 2012-05-02 08:39

    Government comments on relationships and supplies - both would be wonderful if they just paid their bills. People in business who have suffered hardship through non payment should band together and bring a class action against government.

  • Quanta-His - 2012-05-02 08:45

    Settlement is good thing..

  • Rob - 2012-05-02 09:00

    Just how long, and what, is it going to take for the Health Department to get to conduct themselves in a manner that promotes confidence and sets an example for business ethics? Paying the bills after companies have been stretched to breaking point may resolve legal liabilities but it certainly does not resolve anything else.

  • esethu3 - 2012-05-02 09:02

    I wot bring negativity on this article. when they are actually doing something we should be happy. and here an action happened and It will improve even if its by 0.05% in the lives of those patients the medication will be provided to.

      Rob - 2012-05-02 09:30

      esethu3: You should not be so happy, yes medication today is good.....but what about next month. The fact is that it was negligence, some would say criminal negligence, that caused the problem in the first place. Now the question has to go beyond temporary fix to corrective action even disciplinary. It comes down to making peolpe in authority accountable.

  • lyn.croote - 2012-05-02 10:33

    While I am happy that they have paid everyone they have not paid us NGO's our money since December 2011 and we have been told that they are not sure of continued support. We do life saving work with children and did not even get a call to say the money was not going to be paid out it just stopped!!

  • Sharon - 2012-05-02 10:41

    Criminal and disciplinary action needs ot be taken against all those who have endangered patients lives by their incompetence, corruption and theft of state time and resources.

  • Robin - 2012-05-02 10:46

    And this statement make news?????? Whatever happened to the ethics of paying debts when due without having to be threatened with court action?

  • Arvin - 2012-05-02 11:13

    Try not paying the Govt and then see what happens. They are too quick to summon you. Thieves.

  • Ant138 - 2012-05-02 15:57

    BS - what about their other suppliers that have not been paid for over 9 months & who repeatedly have to beg for payment?

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