R500m West Rand Covid hospital faces uncertainty as 20 staff members set to leave

R500m West Rand Covid hospital faces uncertainty as 20 staff members set to leave

It is not yet clear what will happen to the multimillion-rand AngloGold Ashanti Hospital in Carletonville on the West Rand as about 20 staff members are set to leave at the end of this month.

This was revealed by Gauteng Health MEC Dr Nomathemba Mokgethi in a written reply to questions tabled by DA in the provincial legislature on Tuesday.

Mokgethi said no decision had yet been taken on the future of the hospital whose initial refurbishment budget of R50 million has allegedly ballooned to almost R500 million.

The provincial government invested R460 million in the AngloGold Ashanti Hospital in Carletonville on the West Rand after it was identified as a Covid-19 critical care facility. It was handed over to the health department on May 14.

Since its official opening in May last year, Mokgethi said there were only 147 Covid-19 patients treated at the hospital.

“The hospital was supposed to have 181 intensive care unit (ICU) beds to treat Covid-19 patients. However, only 56 beds can be occupied by patients who do not require ICU management,” Mokgethi said.

She said the unit exclusively classified to be an ICU had not been officially handed over to the department. “Currently, there is no bed space that is well resourced to treat patients who require ICU management. There are also eight wards with a total of 125 beds that have not been completed because contractors have not yet finished their work,” Mokgethi said.

READ: R460 million Covid-19 hospital stands empty as admissions soar

Bloom, the DA spokesperson on health in Gauteng, said the department had spent about R6 million on staff for this hospital. “However, there are only 34 patients who have been treated there since the beginning of this year. It is no use pumping more money into this white elephant hospital which is likely to become a ghost hospital without staff or adequate medical equipment.

Bloom said:

The provincial government does not even own the building as the donation by the Anglo Ashanti mining company has not been finalised.He said the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) was probing corruption as the refurbishment bill had allegedly escalated to more than R500 million. “According to the SIU, six of the contractors were irregularly appointed by the Gauteng department of infrastructure development without a contract amount, no bill of quantities and no scope of work. It is a major scandal that so much money was wasted on this hospital far from […]

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