The Health Ombud has agreed based on the progress made and support to the Non-Governmental Organisations in the interest of patients, to extend the 45-day deadline for the transfer of patients.
This was announced by the Gauteng Health MEC, Gwen Ramokgopa while providing an update on the implementation of Health Ombudsman recommendations at the media briefing on Thursday afternoon in Johannesburg.
MEC Ramokgopa further elaborated that over the past 79 days, the department worked closely with the Office of the Minister of Health, the Premier of Gauteng and the families in the transfer of mental health patients to appropriate and suitable facilities.
Ramokgopa said “The multi-disciplinary team of experts involved in the process of moving patients have advised that the 45 days will have an adverse effect on the wellbeing of the patients. The projected date for the transfer of all patients is end of April 2017,” said Ramogopa
To date 592 mental health patients have been transferred to suitable facilities and the licencing requirements for NGO’s are being reviewed and regularised and those who do not qualify their licences are revoked.
MEC, Dr Gwen Ramokgopa together with the family members of the patients have visited Cullinan rehabilitation centre on Saturday to satisfy themselves that the patients that are there are in good condition and to address other issues that were shortfall.
MEC also announced that the disciplinary hearing for the HoD Dr T Selebano that was set to take place from 13-17 March 2017 was postponed to allow time for the employee to make representations to the Health Ombudsman meanwhile the other officials cited in the report of the Health Ombudsman have all been issued with notices of intention to suspend.