Story by Thandeka Vinjwa, an OurHealth Citizen Journalist reporting from Lusikisiki in the OR Tambo district of the Eastern Cape.
LUSIKISIKI. ‘ The management of Madwaleni Hospital on Monday refused to report back to the community after serious grievances were laid against the hospital.
A month earlier, stakeholders called a meeting with the hospital board to discuss problems the community had experienced with the health services they received from the hospital. Among the issues mentioned were staff and medicine shortages, poor infrastructure and too many unnecessary deaths.
Madwaleni Hospital board members agreed to look into the issues and report back to the community in a month’s time. But at Monday’s meeting – attended by members of the Treatment Action Campaign (TAC) and the wider community, chiefs, chieftains and journalists ‘ the chair person of the hospital board, Mr Gabada, said they would not present the results from their investigation because ‘we are bound by the policy of the department and also we were elected by the Madwaleni community members therefore we will account to them without the foreign body’ (referring to the presence of members of the TAC).
This resulted in the village chief suggesting that hospital board members leave the room if they don’t intend to report any of their findings back to the community. The board members refused and instead members of the TAC and the community left.
The community was left asking whether the hospital had something to hide because they could not share the results of their report in the presence of members from the TAC.
Since the incident on Monday, the village chief has called a meeting between civil society and the hospital board members to continue discussions around this issue.