HRC tackles dearth of doctors

Kingdom Mabuza

Kingdom Mabuza

The Human Rights Commission (HRC) is not going to let the Mpumalanga health department get away with having too few doctors.

HRC legal officer, Bafana Malunga, said their repeated attempts to get the department to explain the shortage had been ignored .

The HRC is pursuing the matter after the Christian Party lodged a complaint about the acute shortage of doctors.

"We have written two letters asking them to explain how they are addressing the shortage of doctors, but we have not received a reply."

The letters were hand delivered to acting head Sibongile Zungu. Department spokesman Mpho Gabashane said Zungu denied receiving a letter from the HRC, but "we are doing something about the shortage".

The department has sent students to study in Cuba and would recruit graduates from local universities.

About 700 doctors serve some 3million people, whereas the desired number of doctors is 1500.

National health spokesman Sibani Mngadi said private doctors were being asked to help.