Mmegi Online :: Patients threaten us - NRH medic
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Last Updated
Tuesday 13 November 2018, 16:21 pm.
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Patients threaten us - NRH medic

FRANCISTOWN: Medical staff at Nyangabgwe Referral Hospital (NRH) have claimed that they are abused and face threats of physical assault from patients at the Accident and Emergency (AE) wing.
By Chakalisa Dube Thu 13 Nov 2014, 12:12 pm (GMT +2)
Mmegi Online :: Patients threaten us - NRH medic








Dr Boago Didimalang who heads the wing said during a press briefing by the hospital management on Tuesday that the patients insult and threaten to beat staff because of delays in service provision.

“We are subjected to too much verbal abuse by our clients. Often times, we are accused of delaying provision of services, which is not true at all.

At the emergency wing, we are short staffed and at times, one case can take long to deal with based on its complexity,” explained the medic.

“We also deal with cases based on the seriousness of patients not on a first-come-first-serve basis but most people seem not to understand this and most times they hurl obscene words at us when it takes a bit long to  help them. We urge the public to desist from such actions,” Didimalang appealed.

Sometimes patients go to the extent of trying to beat doctors and other staff members when they feel that they have been on the line for a long time without help, the medic said. Didimalang stated that most people do not utilise clinics but instead prefer to visit the NRH emergency wing even when they have less severe cases. This leads to delays in service delivery at the AE wing.

In a day, he said that they deal with around 80

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patients before the 18th of each month. The patients are often seen by one or two doctors, depending on shifts.

He stated that after the 18th, the number of patients at the emergency wing rises to around 200 a day. “The high number of patients does not only delay the provision of services, it also affects the quality of services provided because when the staff is overstretched, it gets fatigued and becomes less effective,” Didimalang said.

The AE department has five doctors who work in shifts.   

Meanwhile, the NRH Emergency Medical Services (EMS) wing coordinator, Thabani Bhebhe said staff under him are insulted by those who call the 997 toll-free number.

The number is used to report emergencies and call for assistance from hospitals around the country. At NRH, the EMS coordinates the 997 calls and dispatches emergency assistance needed by callers.

“Sometimes, young children are even aided by parents to hurl obscene and insulting words to our service dispatchers. The parents will be talking in the background. Such calls even block important calls of people in need of emergency assistance,” he said. 

The NRH matron, Mpotseng Moamogwe said that they decided recently not to allow husbands or boyfriends in the delivery room during labour.

She said the decision was taken to decongest the facility, whose infrastructure is overstretched.

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