Call for probe into Jeppe Street clinic after R3m renovations couldn't halt closure

(File, iStock)
(File, iStock)

The Democratic Alliance called for a forensic investigation into the Jeppe Street provincial clinic in central Johannesburg after reports that the clinic would close its doors permanently.

According to the party's health spokesperson, Jack Bloom, the facility is closing its doors because refurbishments which cost R3m failed to eliminate health risks to staff and patients at the clinic.

"There needs to be a forensic investigation into probable corruption in the refurbishment fiasco at this clinic and accountability to ensure that all corrupt and incompetent officials are rooted out," he said.

According to Bloom, in 2012 the clinic was closed for a R2m renovation that was completed in March 2014. 

The clinic walls then started to mould which led to it closing in March 2017 for further renovations at a cost of almost R1m. It reopened again in November. 

Bloom said he was "dismayed" that money had been wasted on the clinic, which has been opening and closing for refurbishments. 

Department of Health spokesperson Mogeru Morewane said the closure was because of recurring problems in the building. 

"These problems have resurfaced again, which led to the decision to permanently close the facility so as to ensure patients and employee safety," Morewane said.

Bloom said the closure of the clinic would inconvenience almost 2 500 patients who use it monthly and who would now have to travel to other clinics for treatment. 

Patients will be redirected to Essellen Clinic and Hillbrow Community Healthcare Centre while staff will be relocated to other clinics, the department said. 

The clinic will close on October 12 at 16:00.

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