KwaZulu-Natal health MEC Sibongiseni Dhlomo. PHOTO: Supplied.

Durban - The KwaZulu-Natal Forensic Pathology staff have been commended for the crucial role in completing autopsies in recent adverse incidents. 

The wall of the Pentecostal Holiness Church building collapsed, killing 13 people in Empangeni on the eve of Good Friday last week. 

Then a bus carrying mourners returning from that funeral overturned near KwaCeza, leaving 52 people injured.

More than 70 people were reported dead in the KZN flood disaster.  

KwaZulu-Natal Health MEC Dr Sibongiseni Dhlomo heaped praise on all the paramedics, doctors and nurses who sprung to action and rendered medical assistance to the injured.

“We would like to commend our KZN Health Emergency Medical Services staff for stabilising and transporting these patients, and the doctors and nurses at Ceza and Nkonjeni hospitals, who received them and swiftly provided medical attention. We dispatched seven Intermediate Life Support Paramedics, six Basic Life Support paramedics, two Emergency Support Vehicles, and 1 rescue response vehicle to the scene. All our EMS personnel applied themselves fully, stabilising those who were seriously injured, before transferring them to hospital. They were equal to the task, and we appreciate what they did," Dhlomo said.

The MEC also thanked the province’s Forensic Pathology Services staff for performing their tasks with diligence in response to recent adverse incidents, including conducting the autopsies on the bodies of five people who lost their lives during a road crash in the Ndlagubo area, on the same day as the church collapse and completing all autopsies of the 67 people who demised in separate incidents during the floods that swept through the eThekwini area

“These recent incidents have been a difficult test of our ability and readiness to respond effectively to unforeseen emergencies. Our Forensic Pathology Services, EMS paramedics, nurses and clinicians really rose to the occasion over the past few days. As sad and painful as it has been to witness the loss of lives and destruction to property on such a massive scale, the way in which our people have responded has been nevertheless comforting, for us and for those who are grieving,"Dhlomo said

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