Simelane-Zulu had “declared that the contact details of all hospital chief executives, district directors, and those in charge of dispatching ambulances will be made public”, the department said.
“Why should I be the only one who gets phone calls in the middle of the night? If we are serious about being public servants, then we must all be accessible to the public,” she said.
These changes were part of ensuring collective responsibility by senior management at the department. The MEC also revealed that the department would redeploy office-based qualified doctors and nurses at head office and across the province’s 11 health districts back into the field to serve communities at hospitals and clinics. This would be done in an organised and structured manner, and would boost capacity, she said.
Although the changes “are not likely to make me popular in certain quarters”, they were nevertheless crucial if the department was to successfully carry out its mandate of serving the people and improving health outcomes in the province.