File picture: Independent Media

Rustenburg - State ambulances in the North West will focus on emergencies, the province's Health MEC Dr Magome Masike said on Friday.

He said private ambulance contracted in the North West would only be used for inter-facility transfer.

"Ideally you got to have one ambulance per 10 000 people, if you have 3.7 million people in the province what that means is that we need 370 ambulances, we do not have them. We came with a strategy where we needed to outsource a part of the ambulance service only inter-facility transfers," he said.

Masike was giving a briefing on the state of the department, its turnaround strategy and intervention progress.

The department of health was put under administration, following the near collapse of the healthcare services following a strike by the National Education Health and Allied Workers Union (Nehawu).

North West Health MEC Dr Magome Masike says state ambulances will be used for emergencies and private sourced ambulances will be used to transfer patients from one hospital to another. MEDIA: Molaole Montsho/ANA

He said that they have drawn lessons from the strike in the sense that medication was delivered directly to hospitals rather than depending on depots.

The depots were unable to deliver medication to hospitals during the three-month Nehawu strike earlier this year.

He said the department was en-route to deliver quality health care to people in the North West.

African News Agency/ANA