The Gift of the Givers Freesia Ward at Mitchell's Plain Hospital was recently renovated at a cost of R10 million and officially opened on 6 August. Picture: Ayanda Ndamane/African News Agency (ANA)
The Gift of the Givers Freesia Ward at Mitchell's Plain Hospital was recently renovated at a cost of R10 million and officially opened on 6 August. Picture: Ayanda Ndamane/African News Agency (ANA)

First Covid-19 patients admitted to Gift of the Givers new Freesia Ward

By Okuhle Hlati Time of article published Sep 8, 2020

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Cape Town - Gift of the Givers’ Freesia Ward at Mitchell’s Plain Hospital has begun admitting its first patients after its recent renovation. The upgrade of the 60-bed, dedicated Covid-19 facility took a month to complete.

THE newly revamped Freesia Ward at Mitchells Plain Hospital welcomed its first four Covid-19 patients yesterday.

The hospital embarked on an extensive R10 million renovation after humanitarian aid organisation Gift of the Givers (GOTG) made a donation to transform the ward to care for Covid19 patients.

Monique Johnstone, provincial Health spokesperson for the Klipfontein and Mitchells Plain substructure, said the 60-bed ward had received equipment including new oxygen machines, curtains for patients’ privacy, and furniture.

The month- long renovation project began in June and the ward was officially handed over by GOTG founder Dr Imtiaz Sooliman to the provincial Department of Health at a plaque and unveiling ceremony last month. The event coincided with the organisation’s 28th anniversary.

Sooliman said the ward would be beneficial to the hospital in future due to the additional bed capacity it provided.

“We have been waiting for this day (admission of patients to the ward) for some time, and are happy that it has finally come,” he said. “The pandemic has proved that working together and building relationships like these benefit communities in a huge way.

“Increasing capacity within a given hospital is infinitely more practical than setting up new remote facilities at non-hospital venues, given the acute staff and essential equipment shortage.

“Fortunately, Mitchells Plain Hospital had an entire wing that we could convert into a dedicated Covid-19 oxygen facility within a short space of time.”

The ward could accommodate various medical disciplines, including trauma and elective surgery in the face of decreased Covid-19 admissions, but could also be up-scaled to deal with a second wave of infections.

Head of the provincial Health Department Dr Keith Cloete said: “The support and partnership between Gift

of the Givers and the department during the pandemic shows that by working together we can ensure optimal care for our vulnerable communities.

“We are appreciative of the additional humanitarian support in fighting this Covid-19 pandemic.”

Cape Times

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