Ricochet News

Mystery week-long closure of Buffalo City clinic leaves thousands vulnerable: DA

Jan 18, 2017
Mystery week-long closure of Buffalo City clinic leaves thousands vulnerable: DA

The Democratic Alliance (DA) in the Eastern Cape has sought urgent clarity from the MEC for Health, Dr Phumza Dyantyi, about the sudden, week-long closure of the Westbank Clinic, in Bank Street in the Buffalo City Metro.

"I am dismayed that the clinic will be closed from today [Tuesday] until 23 January 2017," described Celeste Barker (MPL), the DA's Eastern Cape Shadow MEC for Health.

"This facility serves thousands of people living in informal settlements in the area.

"A caring government prioritises the needs of its residents and should engage with its vulnerable citizens. The DA believes in providing access to well-run clinics and health care facilities that provide patients with the best possible services. We put patients first regardless of who they are and where they live."

Barker said that she has requested a full report on the closure of the Westbank Clinic from the MEC and will also submit the following legislature questions for written reply:

1. Is the MEC aware that the Westbank Clinic will be closed from 17 to 23 January 2017; if so, what are the reasons for the closure? If not, why was she not informed?
2. Who made this decision?
3. Were patients informed in advance of the closure?
4. What contingency measures are in place for Westbank Clinic patients?
5. Where exactly are heart patients, infants, toddlers, the elderly and all patients who require wound dressing and prescription drugs expected to go?
6. What has been done to ensure that patient information will be duplicated and sent to another clinic?

"The DA will defend and protect the constitutional rights of our people to reliable healthcare for all. We are committed to building a free and fair opportunity society," she added.