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GP Health Dept denies some facilities short of medication

The department is under the spotlight following the deaths of 36 psychiatric patients.

Gauteng Health MEC Qedani Mahlangu on 3 May 2016. Picture: Emily Corke/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - The Gauteng Health Department says all NGOs where psychiatric patients from Life Esidimeni were transferred are well supported by the districts and there is no truth to reports of the facilities not having medication.

The department confirmed last week that 36 of the patients died after being transferred to other hospitals.

The patients were taken to various facilities after the department terminated its contract with Esidimeni.

Jeff Connacher says his 28-year-old son was taken to NGO Re Ba Fenyi, near Hennops in Pretoria, at the end of May this year.

Connacher says he was shocked when he visited his son last week - to find out that the institution had had no medication for three weeks.

He has pleaded with Gauteng Health MEC Qedani Mahlangu to do her job.

"There's just no excuse for the dereliction of duty."

But the department's Steve Mabona says there was no shortage as a batch of medication was delivered to the facility yesterday and that the district has everything under control.

Health Minister, Aaron Motsoaledi has ordered the health ombudsman to investigate the deaths of the 36 patients.

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