Bloemfontein - The trial of a Free State male nurse accused of raping a terminally ill cancer patient was postponed to next year in the Bloemfontein High Court on Monday.

Free State National Prosecuting Authority spokesman Phaladi Shuping, said the 33-year-old man’s new legal counsel needed to prepare for the case after the previous counsel withdrew.

The nurse faces two counts of rape.

He was arrested after the woman said she had been raped during a night shift at the National Hospital in Bloemfontein.

The 50-year-old woman's husband told police the attack happened on October 15 last year.

The patient, who has since died, could not identify a woman nurse she said had held her down while she was raped.

The accused is out on bail. - Sapa