SA Human Rights Commission welcomes settlement with family of Martha Marais who was tied to Mamelodi Hospital bench

The South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) has welcomed the settlement reached between Martha Marais, the elderly woman who was tied to a bench at Mamelodi Hospital, and the Gauteng Department of Health.

"The Commission particularly welcomes the Department of Health’s undertaking to provide special training to staff in the treatment of elderly and vulnerable patients as healthcare challenges in the country… are compounded for older persons when they are treated with a lack of respect by healthcare professionals, which is far too often the case," the commission said in a statement on Tuesday.

Seventy-six-year-old Marais was bound to a hospital bench in the waiting area in May 2019.

Her daughter found her on the floor and begged hospital staff to untie her.

A video of the incident went viral on social media.

READ | 'I was so hungry and thirsty' – 76-year-old woman on being tied to hospital's bench overnight

"Marais was severely traumatised as a result of the abovementioned incident and her family reported that she barely communicated with them, other than to repeatedly recount her traumatic experience," the commission said.

Following the incident, the commission assisted Marais in taking action against the department.

In November, the two parties reached a settlement agreement.

"The incident at the Mamelodi Hospital showed the lack of necessary skills and capacity to assist older persons, and the shortage of equipment required to render proper assistance.

"As a result of these and other barriers to accessing adequate healthcare, older persons find it difficult to attend public clinics or hospitals, and only do so when illness is at an advanced stage and irreversible," the commission said.

It added that it supports the department’s aim to address ongoing challenges in the health system.

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For only R75 per month, you have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today.
Subscribe to News24
Lockdown For
DAYS
HRS
MINS
Voting Booth
When assisting your child with remote learning this year, did you:
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
Follow the school's comprehensive sexuality education (CSE) curriculum?
13% - 271 votes
Adjust the CSE curriculum to suit the family's morals?
23% - 481 votes
Ignore the schools CSE programme and do your own teaching?
63% - 1295 votes
Vote
ZAR/USD
15.25
(+1.12)
ZAR/GBP
20.48
(+0.49)
ZAR/EUR
18.40
(+0.09)
ZAR/AUD
11.24
(+0.98)
ZAR/JPY
0.15
(+1.15)
Gold
1814.20
(+2.01)
Silver
23.97
(+5.94)
Platinum
1000.00
(+3.62)
Brent Crude
47.66
(-0.77)
Palladium
2412.50
(+2.22)
All Share
57509.72
(+0.73)
Top 40
52764.09
(+0.74)
Financial 15
11238.33
(+0.71)
Industrial 25
79067.55
(+0.13)
Resource 10
53562.00
(+1.63)
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes morningstar logo