The North West Department of Health Health MEC Madoda Sambatha, yesterday, 11October 2022 held a successful stakeholder briefing session which sought to give an update on the status of Thusong District Hospital.MEC Sambatha started by reminding the stakeholders that, he and the Minister of Health Dr Joe Phaahla visited Thusong District Hospital at the beginning of this year on the 14th January 2022, following the news of unexplained heat that was coming from the hospital floor on the pharmacy section. Assessment of Thusong District Hospital Infrastructure“I can report that an assessment of the entire hospital was done, first to confirm the issue of the mysterious heat and secondly the assessment of the condition of the entire hospital infrastructure. The issue of unexplainable heat emissions which were coming from the pharmaceutical wing of the hospital and saw temperatures within the facility reaching a record high of 56.5 degrees Celcius was confirmed to be true and posed immediate danger to both the patients and the employees of the Department”, said MEC Sambatha.
He further stated that the infrastructure conditions of the facility was also found to be in a total disrepair despite efforts to maintain the hospital due the dolomitic soil which was causing major structural defects and cracks. It is for this reasons that the MEC took a decision and ordered the immediate evacuation of patients and closure of the facility to protect the lives of patients and employees.The MEC also apologised to the community for poor communication which should have prevented any misunderstanding. He indicated that the delay in proceeding with decommissioning was to ensure proper consultation and see if some of the materials like windows, doors and roofing material cannot be salvaged and donated to other social support structures and organisations.It is therefore important to stress that Thusong District Hospital is not neglected. A decision was taken to permanently close the facility. Following this decision, Itsoseng Community Health Center was always prepared in advance to cater for some of the hospital services because the Department foresaw that Thusong District Hospital will not be sustainable as a facility in the near future. So, some of the patients were immediately moved to Itsoseng CHC while others were accommodated at the General Delarey Hospital in Lichtenburg.Summary of Stop Gap Measures Currently in Place to Ensure Delivery ofHealth Services.
•Primary Health Care Services have been relocated to the Itsoseng CommunityHealth Centre (CHC). •A mobile clinic services communities as a replacement of Thusong gateway clinic at Sheila village. •Installation of an oxygen reticulation is currently in progress at Itsoseng CHC. •Services of a Sonographer, Social worker and dietetics services are rendered daily from Itsoseng CHC. •Patients are referred to General De La Rey for Xrays. •Level 2 medicines are shared between Itsoseng CHC and General Delarey where the equipment is transported between the two facilities and delivery takes place twice a week.
Progress to date •A decommissioning task team has been appointed to provide strategic leadership to the process through the provision of support and oversight. •Constant engagements are taking place with staff of Thusong District Hospital to provide feedback on developments.•The province is tracking progress on the finalisation by the National department of Health to Gazette the Itsoseng Health Centre. •Approval to delist Thusong Hospital as an organisational unit has been received. •The Itsoseng CHC has been issued with a pharmacy licence by the NDoH.Payment has to the Pharmacy Council been effected to inspect the pharmacy and award the final pharmacy licence. •Patients' records have been relocated to the upcoming Itsoseng DistrictHospital, shelves have been installed, sorting and filling is completed.
Expansion of Hospital Services for the People of Ditsobotla
Plans are at an advanced stage to upgrade the Itsoseng Community Health Centre into a District Hospital to ensure improved access to preventive and curative health services to communities in and around Itsoseng Township.
The stakeholders were also pleased to learn that, while Itsoseng Community Health Center is expanded into a district hospital, plan are underway for building a clinic for the community in Shiela and surrounding areas. The Traditional Authority announced at the briefing session that land has already been identified for this purpose.
Enquiries: Tebogo Lekgethwane Departmental Spokesperson 0674227763