File Picture: Ayanda Ndamane African news Agency (ANA)
File Picture: Ayanda Ndamane African news Agency (ANA)

Limpopo to send Covid patients home if they refuse to be transferred to other hospitals

By Bongani Nkosi Time of article published Jan 11, 2021

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Johannesburg - As Covid-19 cases increase in Limpopo, hospitals will order patients refusing to be transferred to hospitals in other parts of the province to go back home.

The Limpopo health department’s public notice issued recently announced that hospital beds have been pooled due to a higher demand.

This meant a patient should not expect hospitalisation in their local hospital, as they could be transferred to a remote institution with available beds.

“There is a high demand for beds. As a result all beds in all hospitals have been pooled to enable admission of patients as required,” said the notice. This means that if the beds in the hospitals where you are consulting now are full … you will be admitted and captured in the hospital system. A bed will be secured for you at any of the Limpopo Department of Health’s hospitals.

“You will be transferred and transported to the hospital where a bed was found for you. On discharge you will be transported back to your base hospital,” the notice said.

Those refusing to be allocated a bed in other hospitals will be asked to sign a form admitting to declining treatment.

“If you refuse to be transferred or transported to a hospital where a bed was found for you … your refusal will be entered into the hospital file,” said the notice. “You must sign a Refusal of Hospital Treatment Form. You must leave the hospital premises and make space for other patients.”

The Limpopo health department said last Friday the province was experiencing a spike in the numbers of people testing positive for the coronavirus.

The province recorded “an all time high of 1644 new positive cases” between Thursday and Friday, the department announced.

It said the Vhembe District, which maintained low figures for the longest period, was now a major contributor to the province’s high positive cases.

The district recorded 493 new positive cases between Thursday and Friday. It was just eight cases short of being equal to the Capricorn District, which recorded 501 new cases.

Health MEC Phophi Ramathuba voiced concern about funerals.

"With the increasing number of funerals, our people still treat funerals as normal.

“Our people continue to visit bereaved families and also attend funerals in large numbers,” she said.

“Now we are seeing funerals becoming grounds for super spreaders. We therefore want to request our people to desist from these practices."

The Star

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