Home Africa News ‘Rats feeding on blood and waste,’ Inside South Africa’s ‘hospitals of horrors’

‘Rats feeding on blood and waste,’ Inside South Africa’s ‘hospitals of horrors’

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South African hospitals in the poorest corners of the country have become a death trap as the health system is heading for a failure. A week long investigation by the BBC revealed horrible environments that patients are living in.

Nurses at Eastern Cape hospitals have been forced to work as cleaners as ancillary staff has gone on strike or they themselves are sick with the coronavirus. There are also reports of unborn babies dying due to lack o care and overcrowding.


Broken Drainage system in Eastern Cape Hospitals

Health services were circling the drain for 10 years. Now they’ve collapsed” Picture by BBC

With unions and management are fighting over employee welfare, one doctor from a hospital in the Eastern Cape described the situation as “an epic failure of a deeply corrupt system”. Another described the situation ans ‘desperate’ and believed the health department is facing a serious ‘institution burn-out’ due to failure of strategic management.

Medics terrified to work in Eastern Cape hospitals
Medics are reportedly fearful of working in Eastern Cape hospitals. So dire is the situation that health care givers are choosing to go jobless than to work in hospitals. Health workers are also resigning en-masse.

Rats feeding on red waste

Rats have been seen feeding on blood and hospital waste spilling from the broken drainage at Livingstone Hospital, one of the major designated Covid-19 facilities in the province.

Rates feeding in one Eastern Cape hospital. Picture by Daily Maverick

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