"Respect patients at all times in order to preserve struggle hero's legacy," Urges KZN Health MEC, as she presides over the official renaming and opening of the Mfundo Lushaba Community Health Centre

10 April 2021

KwaZulu-Natal Health MEC Ms Nomagugu Simelane has urged management and staff at the newly-renamed Mfundo Lushaba Community Health Centre (CHC) at Umzumbe, on the south coast of the province, to treat their patients with respect and dignity at all times.

Although there has been slight disquiet over the renaming of the facility, with some threatening to embark on court action to halt the process, MEC Simelane made it clear that she was neither "ashamed" nor "embarrassed" that the facility was being renamed after the former mayor.

She emphasised that all requisite public consultative processes had been widely followed ahead of the renaming process.

She then urged communities to always seek ways to record, document and celebrate the history of its own heroes, lest it fades away with the passage of time. Failure to do so would result in the story of the proverbial hunted being told from the perspective of the hunter.

"Not everyone can write well, but many people in our communities are good orators. Those people need to find good writers who can sit them down, so that their stories can be recorded and documented."

The MEC called on healthcare workers at this facility and elsewhere in the province to maintain the highest professional standards at all times.

"This gesture [of renaming this facility] poses a major challenge to the management and staff of this facility to represent Cde Lushaba well, and do justice to his name.

"If staff mistreats patients and engages in medical negligence, that will not help us at all as it will only serve to drag his good name - and that of his beloved ANC - through the mud.

"It would also mean we are failing our own people, the majority of whom rely on the public healthcare system for their health and wellbeing."

The MEC also revealed that, as of the latest reporting cycle, 334 794 people had been infected with COVID - 19 in KZN since the virus was first discovered, with a total of 10 625 having sadly lost their lives. The province had registered 107 new cases, while 318 929 people had recovered from the virus.

The vaccination process was also continuing in earnest, with 51 243 vaccinations done since the process started, the MEC said.

The process has unfolded as follows: From the first 80 000 doses that the country received on the 16th of February 2021, KZN received 10 800.

The second batch of 80 000 doses was received at the beginning of March, with KZN being allocated 15 120 vaccines (public sector =10 585 and private sector = 4 535), which was broken down as follows:

  • EThekwini Catchment areas = 2 200 vaccines
  • Edendale Catchment areas = 4 760
  • General Justice Gizenga Mpanza Catchment areas = 1 280
  • Madadeni Hospital Catchment areas = 2 345

For now, vaccination for the private sector is taking place at St Augustine's Hospital in Durban and Madadeni Medi-clinic in Newcastle.

The third batch of 80 000 doses for the country has also been received and distributed at hospitals as follows:

  • GJ Crookes: 3800 (includes 200 for the private sector)
  • Ladysmith: 2400 (includes 300 for the private sector)
  • Medi-clinic: 1800
  • St Augustine’s 5600 (includes 800 for the public sector)
  • Dundee: 1600
  • Vryheid Christ the King 1600
  • Ngwelezane 2000 (includes 200 for the Private sector)
  • Hlabisa Hospital will receive its vaccines during the next round of the vaccination campaign, when it starts next week.

The districts and hospitals that are next in line to receive the vaccines on 13 April dates are:

  • St Augustine’s eThekwini and its catchment hospitals (8000 doses, made up of 50% for the public and 50% for the private sector)
  • Medi-clinic UMgungundlovu (500 doses: 50% public and 50% private)
  • Ladysmith uThukela and catchment hospitals (1500 doses with 10% going to the private sector)
  • Vryheid Zululand & catchment hospitals (1000 doses with 10% going to the Private sector)
  • Ngwelezane and catchment hospitals (2200 with 20% going to the private sector)
  • Hlabisa, Umkhanyakude and catchment hospitals, including Benedictine, Nkonjeni, and St Francis. They will receive 4400 doses, with 10% of it going to the private sector).
  • MEC Simelane added: "I wish to re-iterate our call that, when the vaccine becomes available for use by the public, we absolutely need to take full advantage of it.

    "This is the least we can do to save our lives, and to honour and remember those who passed away before the vaccine became available.

    "Most importantly, even though it looks like the second wave of COVID - 19 has subsided, this does not mean that we must now be complacent because COVID - 19 is still pretty much alive, and claiming people's lives. And there is the ever-looming threat of the third wave, which has already taken other countries by storm.

    "We are pleading with our people to continue washing their hands regularly, and to maintain social distancing. We know that the regulations say that people must wear a mask when they are venturing out to the public. But as the Department of Health we go a step further and request that you also wear a mask when at home. Especially, those who share their homes with people who are aged 60 and above, and those who have co-morbidities, who are especially susceptible to COVID - 19."

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    This page last edited on 12 April, 2021

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