New hospital complaints initiative

WC patients will be able to log complaints now and get a response in 20 minutes.

Western Cape patients unhappy with the level of service received now have more recourses.

CAPE TOWN - Western Cape patients unhappy with the level of service they have received at state health facilities will from Monday have more resources.

They will be able to call, SMS or log a complaint via email while visiting clinics and day hospitals.

Complainants should expect a response on the same day.

The initiative is part of a three-month pilot project running at eight facilities across Cape Town.

The Western Cape Health Department said the new and improved system will enable officials to speed up their processing of and response to patient complaints.

Once a patient has lodged a complaint, call centre agents will respond within 20 minutes. If the issue requires further attention a specific official at the health facility will be tasked with resolving the matter.

In the past, patients would be told to write a letter and expect a response 25 days later.

Health MEC Theuns Botha said the new system doesn't replace the old one; it is simply a way for them to address issues a lot quicker.

If successful, the initiative will be rolled out at hospitals and clinics across the province.