Negligence cases pile up

09 October 2018 | Health

The Health Professions Councils of Namibia (HPCN) currently have 30 pending cases of unprofessional conduct, the majority of which are related to maternal healthcare.

This was confirmed by deputy registrar Crispin Mafwila on the side-lines of the inauguration of the new Health Professions Councils last week.

“These are cases cleared for hearings for unprofessional conduct. Unprofessional conduct is a term which includes negligence and all those areas,” he said.

Mafwila said the public can complain directly to the councils, alternatively the health ministry can submit complaints received by it.

“Some of them have been dragging for a long time but those that are too old, we cleared them. Now the newer ones that are coming along for three or four years which are still pending really need to be finalised, the public is waiting for these cases to be finalised,” he said.

Health minister Bernard Haufiku last week announced that the budget of the HPCN would be increased by N$10 million.

This comes after numerous pleas from the councils for a bigger budget.

According to Mafwila the councils' annual budget is N$67 million. The councils generate N$10 million and have received a mere N$20 million from the ministry for the last three years.

“The money is important because when cases are cleared for hearing, one hearing takes five days. For one hearing it costs us N$450 000. It is costly, because we do it on behalf of the public and we have to pay the lawyer who takes on that case,” said Mafwila.



'Slaughterhouses'

In May 2012, following the death of Juliana Kleopas (41) and her newborn baby at the Katutura state hospital, former president Hifikepunye Pohamba went on a tirade over negligent hospital deaths.





Pohamba called on health workers, especially nurses, to take their work very seriously and save the lives of the people who go to clinics and hospitals for treatment.

He told permanent secretaries at State House that the deplorable incidents of deaths at clinics and state hospitals caused by sheer negligence on the part of some health workers and nurses should not be tolerated.

“We must not, and will not, tolerate such recklessness on the part of those who are duty bound to serve our citizens,” Pohamba said at the time.

“We expect health workers to display positive attitude towards the patients and to help create a conducive working environment.

“The state of disrepair of hospital buildings must be addressed soonest, including unhygienic conditions in and around our hospitals, as well as the living quarters of nurses and doctors.”

His stern warning came in the wake of several deaths of mothers and their babies at the Katutura hospital in the preceding months that sent shockwaves through the country.

Maternal deaths in the country almost doubled between 1992 and 2006 from 225 to 449 per 100 000 live births. Infant deaths increased from 38 per 1000 births in 2000 to 46 per 1000 births in 2006.

Pohamba appointed a presidential commission of inquiry into the state of the country's public healthcare sector in August 2012.

The commission's report was tabled in parliament in 2013. A big issue at the time was sector is nurses' attitudes towards patients, with many patients complaining of not being treated well by health workers. In its report, the commission said nurses claimed they were overworked or “burned out”, and that was one of the main causes of their bad behaviour.

JEMIMA BEUKES

Similar News

 

Foreign graduates protest 'unfair' tests

3 days ago - 15 February 2019 | Health

Dozens of foreign-trained medical and dentistry graduates took to the streets yesterday to protest against a pre-internship exam which they claim is unfair and discriminatory.One...

Rabies sparks mass vaccinations

4 days ago - 14 February 2019 | Health

A 22-year-old man from Omayuuda village in the Ogongo area of the Omusati Region is under medical observation after being bitten by a donkey infected...

Health ministry dumped us into poverty

6 days ago - 12 February 2019 | Health

A group of trainees who successfully completed a community-based healthcare training programme in 2017 accuse the health ministry of plunging them into poverty and despair...

TB Consortium MoU inked

1 week ago - 08 February 2019 | Health

Elizabeth JosephOn 31 January, a memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed for the establishment of the TB Consortium by the Namibian University of Science and...

Hepatitis E claims 40 lives

2 weeks ago - 04 February 2019 | Health

Forty people, including 17 women who were pregnant or had recently given birth, have died from the prolonged hepatitis E outbreak that broke out in...

PSEMAS fraudsters in Schlettwein's sights

3 weeks ago - 28 January 2019 | Health

Finance minister Calle Schlettwein says no stone will be left unturned in efforts to bring those who have defrauded the Public Service Employees Medical Aid...

Health to defend N$30m lawsuit

3 weeks ago - 24 January 2019 | Health

The health ministry and former minister Bernhard Haufiku are ready to defend a N$30 million lawsuit seeking damages for alleged negligence that led to the...

Anglican bishops tackle malaria

3 weeks ago - 22 January 2019 | Health

Bishop Luke Lungile Pato of the Anglican Diocese of Namibia says leaders of the faith community can play an important role in supporting efforts to...

Manganese health concerns for Lüderitz kids

1 month - 11 January 2019 | Health

Over the past week alarmed Lüderitz parents and other residents have called for a local primary school that opened its doors this week to stay...

Winning the war on HIV/Aids

1 month - 10 January 2019 | Health

Namibia is making inroads in the fight against HIV/Aids, according to findings published by the University of Columbia's Mailman School of Medical Health. The results...

Latest News

SA rules the roost at...

7 hours ago | Sports

The South African swimming team opened the African Swimming Federation Zone IV Championships with a total of 19 medals (eight gold, eight silver and three...

Child rapist gets 35 years

7 hours ago | Justice

The Swakopmund Regional Court has imposed a long sentence on a man arrested in 2014 for raping four minor girls at the coastal town. ...

Crisis looms as rain stays...

7 hours ago | Weather

The wetter climatic conditions that marked the start of February in Namibia are likely to cease and make way for dry conditions for the rest...

Okahandja councillors defiant

7 hours ago | Politics

Swapo Party secretary-general Sophia Shaningwa has summoned the party's representatives on the Okahandja town council to a meeting this afternoon at the party headquarters in...

Kunene terminatesCRO contract

7 hours ago | Government

The Kunene regional council has paid an undisclosed lump sum to terminate the contract of former chief regional officer (CRO) George Kamseb, who had refused...

Innovation is essential

7 hours ago | Opinion

So yet another dismal season of dismal rainfall is upon us and soon coming to an end with no respite in sight. That Namibia is...

Cut Rukoro some slack

7 hours ago | Sports

I know many people are celebrating the eventual exit of long-serving Namibia Football Association secretary-general Barry Rukoro but I believe he deserves praise for the...

Not conflicted: Hilda Basson-Namundjebo

7 hours ago | Sports

The chairperson of the Namibia Football Association's Normalisation Committee, Hilda Basson-Namundjebo, says there is no conflict of interests in her position as the new administrator...

Chief Kauluma laid to rest

7 hours ago | People

The deputy chairperson of the Council of Traditional Leaders in Namibia, Chief Immanuel #Nu Axa /Gaseb, has urged young Namibians to emulate the virtues and...

Load More