Minister has plan with jobs in health sector


The state currently has just over 2,000 vacant doctor positions that need to be filled.

According to dr. Joe Phaahla, Minister of Health, needs about R2.4 billion to fill the 2012 doctor posts that were not budgeted for.

This excludes vacant posts of other health professionals such as nursing staff, pharmacists and dentists, Phaahla stressed.

The minister’s announcement follows after it became known that more than 200 doctors who have successfully completed their internships are still waiting to be placed for community service.

According to Phaahla, between January and March this year, 2,066 health workers – in all departments – were appointed.

These appointments consist of 1,121 entry-level medical officers, 579 professional nurses, 127 allied health professionals such as chiropractors, 100 pharmacists, 91 radiographers, 23 dentists and nine environmental health officers.

“These appointments indicate a concerted effort to strengthen the health network across the country,” said Phaahla.

More appointments are expected in May, with the department saying the recruitment process is an ongoing process.

The national department will also give its cooperation to the provincial MECs so that jobs that have not been budgeted for can be activated by making use of additional budgets, says the minister.

RNews earlier reported that the current national unemployment rate for medical officers stands at 14.2%, according to Michele Clarke, the DA’s spokesperson for health.

The national average unemployment rate for nurses is 14.7%, the rate for psychologists stands at 24.36% and for psychiatrists (excluding Gauteng) at 41.89%.

It also came to light earlier this month that the Gauteng Department of Health spends more than R14 million a year on 112 Cuban doctors.

The Cuban doctors were employed at various health facilities and district offices, among others in Johannesburg and Ekurhuleni’s district offices, as well as in Tembisa Hospital in Pretoria and Thelle Mogoerane Hospital in Vosloorus.