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Violent crime in Cape Town also traumatising health workers

Western Cape Health MEC Nomafrench Mbombo says crime is not only destroying communities but also traumatising health workers, eating away at an already stretched health budget.

Picture: Thomas Holder/EWN

CAPE TOWN - The Health Department is warning against rising levels of violent crime, causing a triple crisis in the Cape Metro.

The department released shocking statistics illustrating the extent of gun violence, and its knock-on effects.

Western Cape Health MEC Nomafrench Mbombo says crime is not only destroying communities but also traumatising health workers, eating away at an already stretched health budget.

Mary Bruce, a gunshot victim being treated at Grootte Schuur hospital, said she credits medical staff for saving her leg after being shot at as she aired her laundry in Hanover Park.

"I thank the Lord for my life today because I could have been gone. The injuries are really bad but I do believe I will walk again," she said.

Eight years ago, trauma doctors at Grootte Schurr Hospital were treating fewer than 40 gunshot victims per month.

That figure is currently closer to an average of 73 and the picture is even worse at Tygerberg hospital, where the trauma unit sees more than a hundred gunshot victims every month.

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