Durban - THE KwaZulu-Natal Health Department says the 500-bed Dr Pixley Ka Isaka Seme Memorial Hospital (DPKISMH) has moved one step closer to its opening, after its first batch of posts were advertised at the weekend.
The department said the newly built regional hospital, which will be staffed by 1513 people, will provide much-needed specialist health services to patients referred to it by neighbouring lower-level health care facilities.
KZN Health MEC Nomagugu Simelane-Zulu said the new hospital will provide equitable and better-resourced health infrastructure to people in the north of the district.
She added that the hospital was unique as all auxiliary services, including cleaning, security and catering, will be in-sourced - in line with an ANC policy conference resolution.
The MEC issued a warning that no government posts were for sale, and urged the public to report any unscrupulous individuals seeking to solicit money in exchange for jobs.
“The Dr Pixley Ka Isaka Seme Memorial Hospital will be the fourth regional hospital in eThekwini District, adding to the current RK Khan, Addington and Prince Mshiyeni hospitals. We are very excited that the hospital is now completed and we’ve reached a stage whereby we are working on the staffing aspect,” said the MEC.
“From this weekend, we have issued advertisements explaining the various staffing categories that we are advertising for. We have opted to do it in a staggered fashion so that we are able to manage the process, because we are expecting a large number of applications to come through.
“What I’d like to emphasise is that not a single person should ever have to pay any money to work at the hospital. If someone comes and says, ‘Pay a certain amount so you can get a job,’ that’s a criminal offence. We need to understand that if someone asks you to pay ‘cold-drink’ money that makes you an accessory to crime. You, too, can be arrested.
“We’re aware that some people have started soliciting money from the public. We’ve referred those cases to the police and they’re being investigated.”
Simelane-Zulu has also provided clarity on how the community of Inanda, Ntuzuma and KwaMashu (INK), and surrounds, will benefit from the hospital.
“Yes, the hospital is in the INK area, but it’s a hospital for the greater eThekwini area.
“Yes, local people will receive priority for the lower-level posts, but for professional posts, we will look across the province of KwaZulu-Natal.”
The recruitment process is expected to be concluded by February 2021, due to the expected high number of applications.
Democratic Nurses Organisation (Denosa) provincial secretary Mandla Shabangu said the union wanted all of the nurses, who had been working on temporary contracts during the Covid-19 pandemic, to be given posts at the new hospital.
He said there were more than 1000 nurses on temporary contracts, which were due to expire in November and December, while at least another 1000 nurses were sitting at home unemployed.
“We have had no confirmation whether these nurses who are on contracts will be made permanent or whether they will be transferred to Dr Pixley Ka Isaka Seme hospital,” he said.
Shabangu said the nurses on temporary contracts and the unemployed would likely be more than enough in number to fill the posts.
The health department declined to comment on Denosa’s request.