I want to emigrate but they need me

A 31-year-old doctor at a Cape Town hospital says she earns R18000 a month as a senior medical officer.

A 31-year-old doctor at a Cape Town hospital says she earns R18000 a month as a senior medical officer.

"I spent six years at medical school and have five years' experience in hospitals.

"After my usual deductions, I am left with R12000 a month to live on. But I became a doctor to help people, not to make money.

"Some weeks we have to work overtime, which will push my salary up to R26000 a month, but then I will be working 70 hours a week.

"In those weeks, I am continuously tired and am always worried I may make a wrong decision, which could have disastrous results.

"At the moment, I am considering emigrating to continue my work in better conditions and to a country that will appreciate my professionalism and dedication. However, in my heart I know I should stay and help the sick in South Africa. They are the people who need me."

A 27-year-old doctor who is doing community service at Tembisa Hospital on the East Rand says she takes home R6000.

"Our families put us through universities with the hope that we will be able to look after ourselves, but with this kind of salary I can hardly get myself a place to stay."

She says after she completes her community service she is going to leave the country.

X