Private Sector Contributes to Somerset Hospital Children's Trauma Ward
The money will be used to fit out the new paediatric trauma ward with comfortable child-friendly furniture and modern state-of-the-art equipment. The new ward forms part of the new trauma unit at Somerset Hospital, to be officially opened at the end of April this year. Construction at the site is nearing completion.
In his address to about 100 private sector investors, representatives from the Western Cape Department of Health, and media representatives, Botha stressed that government does not have the financial resources to attend to the dire needs at provincial hospitals and health facilities. "We cannot do this alone. We need to work in conjunction with the private sector to meet our people's needs."
Botha said that when Western Cape Finance Minister Alan Winde tabled the 2010 budget for this province in Western Cape parliament last week, for the first time in many years, Health received the largest chunk of this budget. "I personally am very proud that we have been able to persuade treasury that the well-being of our people, and their mental and physical health, is of utmost importance. I believe that this budget allocation sends a strong message to our people and to opinion leaders in health and the medical sector - that government is serious about affecting real change in our peoples' daily lives."
Thirty six percent (36%) of this year's provincial budget will go to Health - that is more than a third. This represents a twenty percent (20%) increase between this year and last.
This additional funding has, partly, been raised by R2.1 billion that this government was able to save by being more efficient. "After an in-depth review process, we cut fat from non-core service delivery items across this government, and allocated the money to our primary concern, the improvement of healthcare services for the people that rely on their government for this basic right.
Botha said he has little doubt that the only viable solution to our enormous challenge to provide and improve Public Health care can only be achieved with closer relationship, co-operation and joining of forces between public and private health care.
Botha said that Western Cape government has adopted strategies and plans to triple our own revenue by 300% from R350 million to R1 billion per annum. This includes a voluntary health levy on bed occupation, consultations and prescriptions."
Established in 1999, the Truworths Social Involvement Trust targets social responsibility projects that plays a part in community development. At the handover ceremony, Truworths human resource director, Mr. Mark Smith, said "Our Social Involvement Trust is especially committed to expand our corporate social involvement programme, which focuses on the social upliftment of disadvantaged women and youth. This project posed such an opportunity."
Part of the two million rand (R2 million) will be used to create a comfortable waiting area for patients and a child friendly paediatric unit within the new Trauma Unit. Somerset Hospital with the help of Truworths is striving to give their patients a distressful and pleasant waiting period. Our new Trauma Unit will be of international standards and able to deliver a service comparable to any private hospital.
Botha thanked Truworths for their contribution. "I am sure you will hear heartwarming stories of children and babies that will be treated in this ward and you will feel that your money was spent in a significant way."
Western Cape Minister of Health