As part of MEC Makatong’s commitment to increase access to high quality care in all health facilities, she yesterday finalised the appointments of 59 clinical staff members in different categories of nursing, allied health professionals and medical professionals.
The 59 clinical appointments are in response to the shortage of clinical staff at the Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe Hospital, West End Specialised Hospital as well as the Henrietta Stockdale Nursing College. Part of the issues that labour sharply raised with MEC Makatong related to the lack of consequence management from the part of the administration and reluctance of engaging organised labour as part of managing workplace conflicts as espoused by the nine-point plan of government. The meeting resolved that all employees that marched to the HoDs office will return to work tomorrow and a follow up meeting to be held on Friday, 14th December 2018 at the Ministerial offices in Kimberley.
She further committed to look at the appointment of replacement posts after interviews were held in September 2018 in the Frances Baard District with no appointments made to date. According to the South African Nursing Council, 3300 nurses of all categories are registered in the Northern Cape Province. Statistically from the 3300 nurses, the department employed 2700 nurses at this stage and others are in the employ of the private sector. Part of the remedial steps is the continuous recruitment and training of nursing professionals to ensure that the Department reach the provincial target, hence the intake of 90 nursing students earlier this year.
There is still a need to focus on the Nursing professions in our province through not only clinical placements, but ensuring that the Nursing Directorate and management structures be strengthened as per the Nursing Strategy and other legislative requirements. MEC Makatong has reiterated her commitment towards working tirelessly to reduce the vacancy rate for all categories of clinical professionals – which include doctors, nurses, pharmacists and physiotherapists.