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Johannesburg - A patient who set a mattress alight at the Far East Rand Hospital has been taken to Sterkfontein Mental Hospital.

Dr Constance Ndobe, who is a doctor at the Far East Rand Hospital, said they did not know how the mentally ill woman started the fire "but she has been taken to Sterkfontein Mental Hospital for observation."

"A patient burnt a mattress in one of the wards but no one was hurt but some staff experienced smoke inhalation," Dr Ndobe said of the incident on Tuesday.

"Some patients were transferred to other hospitals and others to different wards."

DA Gauteng spokesperson on health Jack Bloom said: "We should all be thankful that no one was injured following the fire at the Far East Rand Hospital last night."

Bloom said he was concerned that this was the second major fire at a Gauteng hospital this year following the fire at the Bheki Mlangeni Hospital in Soweto last month.

"I hope that all hospitals review their fire safety and prevention efforts."

African News Agency (ANA)