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Butterworth Hospital has blown its goods and services budget claims DA

Sep 26, 2018
Butterworth Hospital has blown its goods and services budget claims DA

The Butterworth Hospital has blown its annual goods and services budget in less than six months and is now facing the real possibility of not being able to feed patients under the Hospital’s care, the Democratic Alliance (DA) in the Eastern Cape said on Wednesday.

"Following a recent oversight inspection to the facility, it was revealed that the hospital has blown through 96% of their budget of R19,6 million, with just R781,000 left as of the middle of August," explained Jane Cowley (MPL), DA Eastern Cape Shadow MEC for Health.

"Service providers, including security personnel, have not been paid since July. Even more damning is that the suppliers of critical gasses, including oxygen, have not been paid since June.

"The CEO of the hospital said that the Provincial Head Office was aware of the situation and said the hospital would be applying for top-up funding and was relying on the Provincial Head Office to oblige."

No explanation about how Butterworth Hospital blew budget

Cowley said that no clarity was provided on why this precarious financial situation was allowed to degenerate to this precarious state in the first place.

"The hospital has a Chief Financial Officer and a Chief Executive Officer, both of whom earn very good salaries in order to execute decisions and practise fiscal discipline, so the hospital can function effectively from the beginning to the end of every financial Year," she added.

"This has clearly not happened.

"The Department of Health, upon seeing spending patterns of the hospital at the end of the first quarter, should immediately have taken steps to mitigate the situation and institute some form of financial control."

Cowley said that the Butterworth Hospital already has a reputation for being one of the most highly litigated facilities in the province.

"There is no doubt that the service to the public will  continue to decline if they do not have the money to pay for goods and services, which will no doubt exacerbate the already dire situation," she described.

"The Department of Health needs to clean house. This should include ridding itself of employees who are costing the state a fortune but who are incompetent.  Senior managers who allow an institution to teeter on the brink of total financial collapse should be fired.

"I have set questions to the MEC for Health to establish the financial status of other hospitals in the province."

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