Update on the NEHAWU protest action in the Western Cape, Friday 10 March 2023
On Friday, 10 March 2023, there we very few reports of picketers at two health facilities but no reports of protest action or disruption of service at any health facility in the Western Cape.
This follows four days of protest action, primarily isolated to the Khayelitsha area, which caused some disruption of our healthcare services at Khayelitsha District Hospital (KDH) and Michael Mapongwana Community Day Centre.
During this period, 45 critical patients were transferred from KDH to other nearby hospitals.
While we have had several contingency measures in place to ensure continued health care services are rendered, we thank the support that we have received from the South African Police Services and other law enforcement agencies including the provincially funded Law Enforcement Advancement Programme (LEAP) officers from LEAP’s reaction unit, which strengthened security to ensure the safety of our patients and staff.
The protest action is still ongoing across the country, but we continue to call on the striking members to respect our clients’ human right to access to healthcare services and to allow our staff to care for the ill and vulnerable. We have an established good relationship with labour unions which has enabled us to put the lives of our patients first and not to prevent anyone from accessing health care.
As an additional safety measure, the Departments of Health and Wellness and Social Development have also been awarded an interdict against Nehawu's illegal strike action by the Labour Court.