Denosa warns govt against redeployment of health workers

Denosa said that given the shortage of nurses in the country, redeploying health workers from one facility to another would not help the situation.

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JOHANNESBURG - Nursing union Denosa has warned that the new regulations giving government powers to redeploy health workers will leave many health facilities in distress.

The regulations, which were published a week ago, give health authorities powers to move personnel from one facility to another, be it in another town or province, depending on where the skills are most needed.

Unions have rejected the regulations, saying they were not consulted.

Denosa said that given the shortage of nurses in the country, redeploying health workers from one facility to another would not help the situation.

The union’s Simon Hlungwani: "As it were, you'll find that there's only one professional to run a shift in a particular hospital and you find that some wards have 60 beds, so we ask that in a short-staffed situation, you can never red zone in another area. If you remove nurses from that area that's already taking strain, it means you are stopping services."

Health Department Director-General Anban Pillay said that they would consider these concerns when implementing the regulations.

"We'd be looking at what the needs are in the health facility where the health worker potentially could provide support somewhere else."

He has explained that health workers would not be forced to move without looking at whether their circumstances allowed for this.

For official information about COVID-19 from the Department of Health, please click here.