DA, KZN health in tiff over suppliers

2013-07-26 10:00
(File, AFP)

(File, AFP)

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Durban - A change of suppliers of oxygen cylinders for KwaZulu-Natal's provincial ambulance service sparked a tiff between the opposition DA and provincial health department on Thursday.

In a statement, Democratic Alliance KwaZulu-Natal leader Sizwe Mchunu claimed that the Emergency Medical Rescue Service had not received deliveries of oxygen cylinders for its ambulances for the past two weeks.

Mchunu said the health department had failed to renew the contract and had not appointed a new supplier.

But this was denied by the department's spokesperson Sam Mkhwanazi, who accused the DA of "scoring political points rather than speaking facts".

"The truth of the matter is, whereas the department has changed a supplier which has resulted [in] challenges regarding the required supplies, this, however, has not resulted [in] what can be termed [a] crisis because the department has contingency plans," said Mkhwanazi.

"No service delivery at all our health care facilities in the province has been adversely impacted upon as a result of the shortage of oxygen."

Mchunu has claimed there were reports of a woman dying in Verulam, north of Durban because an ambulance did not have oxygen to resuscitate her.

He urged the provincial health MEC Sibongiseni Dhlomo to address the issue and even call in the private ambulance services if necessary.

Read more on:    da  |  durban  |  politics  |  health

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