THE Africa Health Placement, a medical recruitment agency, says government must employ more foreign doctors to save the country's ailing health system.
Some of the foreigners are doing menial jobs in the country despite their qualifications, according to AHP.
"Unless an immediate solution to solve clinical staff shortages is found, the health system of this country is heading for a disaster," says Dr Clarence Mini, advisory chairperson of AHP.
"The massive shortage of doctors in the health sector is having a terrible impact on the already struggling health system of South Africa.
"This is a shame because this country has the largest health professional production capacity in Africa, yet we have e a severe shortage of staff in the public sector and in rural areas.
"The government knows that the demands on the healthcare system has rapidly escalated over the years, due to diseases like HIV-Aids, but they refuse to recruit foreign doctors."
"There is no harm in wanting to train local doctors but while training them for seven years you need to have a temporary solution. At present there are only 19729 doctors practising in South Africa."
A study conducted in 2003 shows that thousands of doctors left the country to work in first world countries like Britain and the US. The number of doctors who emigrated increased the next two years but they were not replaced. The intake in medical schools remained the same - at about 1200 a year since 1999.
"There are more SA doctors working abroad than doctors working in our public sector," Mini said.
"Allow the people that guard our cars at mall parking lots who are trained doctors in their countries to help us."