Media Statement by KZN Health MEC Ms Nomagugu Simelane, in response to allegations by the IFP on EMS operations in Phoenix

29 March 2023

The IFP's statement on EMS operations in eThekwini District and Phoenix in particular, is devoid of any truth, and must be viewed as an unnecessary and unfortunate attempt at cheap politicking.

Cllr Annipen needs to understand that there is no such thing as an EMS base for people of Phoenix area per se, and that vehicles and other resources are managed in a way that will ensure they are deployed efficiently.

It is quite telling, and in fact typical of his desperation for political relevance, that when Cllr Annipen was asked to provide the names and contact details of the people who allegedly required ambulances but got no assistance, he was found wanting.

Instead of attempting to start unnecessary smear campaign using unsubstantiated accusations, political parties such as that of Cllr Annipen should be joining and supporting the Department's ongoing efforts to mobilise communities to protect paramedics when they venture into communities. They should be leading from the front in fighting crime and rejecting orchestrated attacks against these first responders (paramedics), which has been a worrying and growing phenomenon of late.

Nevertheless, the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Health has a total fleet of 70 operational Ambulances in eThekwini alone, with reasonable coverage of the catchment population that falls under its health facilities within the District. There are four Sub-Districts for emergency care responses, which are coordinated from a central point to ensure efficiency.

To ensure continuity when challenges arise, the Department makes provision for the dispatchment of ambulances from other sub-districts, to provide emergency response, as there are no boundaries that restrict the movement of ambulances. Our daily quest is to provide timeous response and save lives during emergency situations.

As part of ongoing efforts to improve service delivery, the Department has set aside a budget to procure more ambulances in the new financial year 2023/2024.


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This page last edited on 11 July, 2023

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