Umzimkulu Hospital was established on the grounds and buildings of the Mbizweni
Prison, when the Self Governing Transkei homeland was to be an Independent State
(Bantustan) in 1976. In May 1976 the Bantustan Minister of Health Chief Moshesh
inaugurated the Psychiatric Services for Transkei at Umzimkulu.
The first Medical Superintended was Dr. Daynes, First Matron Mrs. BB Mbewu, First Medical Doctor was Dr. T.D Kraai and the first Professional Nurse was Mr. Masepe.
The Hospital started as a rehabilitation center, and admitted patients with alcohol problems up until about October 1976 just before the independence of Transkei when more staff and mentally ill patients were admitted.
The Hospital had mainly corrugated structures for most wards up to about 1992, when a new block of four wards and Patient Administration block was built; with few corrugated spectrum converted to stores and Maintenance Department.
The Hospital had 440 Beds up to about year 2000. When the Hospital Transformation Project (HTP) was finalized, it was found that the Hospital is serving a large catchment area of the whole of Transkei region (as is called after 1994), but is wrongly allocated for purposes of accessibility as it was built at the edge of the Eastern Cape Province. The HTP then recommend a scaling down of the Hospital Beds from 440 to 320 beds. Those beds were used to open a Mental Health Unit at Sphaqeni (Flagstaff), Nyandeni (Libode) and Mthatha. The 1st two being 50 bed Units and increase the Beds in the already existing beds Mthatha Unit to 150 from 14 Beds.
When the change of Boarders for Provinces, Umzimkulu as a Magisterial District belong to KwaZulu-Natal then the change of the Hospital Administration to KZN DoH; since 01 April 2006.
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