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Mental health patients 'face risks' amid Dr Mukhari hospital renovations

The commission visited the hospital on Tuesday for a site inspection following complaints of ill-treatment of patients by the hospital management.

FILE: Dr George Mukhari Hospital. Picture: EWN.

JOHANNESBURG – The South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) said the prolonged renovations at the Dr George Mukhari Hospital in Ga-Rankuwa was placing the health of mental patients at risk.

The commission visited the hospital on Tuesday for a site inspection following complaints of ill-treatment of patients by the hospital management.

The commission met with the acting CEO Professor John Ndimande to probe allegations about the poor quality of treatment and care at the hospital.

The commission said it was shocking to see the contractor carrying out renovations at the hospital with patients there.

The commission's Buang Jones said the smell of paint, constant noise and objects that were left lying around pose a great risk to the mental patients.

“The painting, the grinder; you don’t want noise in such an environment. We heard that patients use loose bricks to fight.”

The commission said the contractor should have been done with the renovations by now.

It has now advised the Department of Infrastructure Development in the province to consider terminating the contract.

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