IFP: Questions Delays in Ambulance Response

The Inkatha Freedom Party in KwaZulu-Natal is asking KwaZulu-Natal Emergency Medical Services to explain why it took three hours for the ambulance to respond to an incident whereby a man was severely injured in a road accident but had to wait in agony for a government ambulance at Ndaba Clinic, Mhlabuyalingana to be able to be transferred to the hospital. A private ambulance had to be called for assistance.

I am very concerned about the poor ambulance response times in KwaZulu-Natal. Many patients have long given up calling ambulances in emergencies, because of bad previous experiences mainly delays. It is unacceptable that any life-threatening emergency can be left unattended to for such a long time. It is completely appalling that such incompetence and recklessness continue to affect our communities. The department needs to investigate exactly what happened as well as ensure serious consequences for those implicated if any culpability is identified and we urge the KZN MEC of Health, Dr Sibongiseni Dhlomo to take action to protect patients.

The current situation needs immediate action if we are to avoid a catastrophic failure of the emergency care systems, and we are asking for a more directive system leadership to hold EMRS to account for their performance,” said IFP KZN Provincial Spokesperson, on Health, Mrs Ncamisile Nkwanyana, MPL.

“I have deep concerns about patients across KwaZulu-Natal who has to rely on the EMRS that they will get a service that will protect them and safeguard them in their hour of need. KwaZulu-Natal residents deserve top-class health services and therefore getting ambulances to patients in good time is extremely important. It is essential that delays are addressed.

This can only be guaranteed by close scrutiny of EMRS. As part of this, it is incredibly important that the KZN Department of Health monitors the delivery of emergency services to ensure that ambulances are not delayed unnecessarily. We all know that a delay of just a few minutes can have dramatic consequences so it’s really important that we monitor this to ensure that people get the safest and highest quality care as quickly as possible.” continued Mrs Nkwanyana.

“This is indicative that the Department of Health is in shambles given that the KwaZulu-Natal health-care services were found wanting, and a recently-released report by the Public Service Commission (PSC) has blasted the department for its unwillingness to show responsiveness and professionalism in handling citizens’ health needs. We have raised numerous concerns about the failure by the KZN MEC of Health, Dr Sibongiseni Dhlomo to provide competent leadership by improving the ailing health care in the province,” concluded Mrs Nkwanyana.

Issued by:
Mrs Ncamisile Nkwanyana MPL
IFP KZN Provincial Spokesperson on Health
078 302 3991