No radiation exposure at Kopanong Hospital‚ health body says

Blood samples were taken to confirm whether the hospital's staff members were over-exposed to radiation.
Blood samples were taken to confirm whether the hospital's staff members were over-exposed to radiation.
Image: 123RF/Lucian Coman

There was no radiation exposure at Kopanong Hospital in Vereeniging‚ the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA) said on Friday.

The authority is a statutory body tasked with regulating all health products‚ including medical devices. The authority has the added responsibility of overseeing radiation control.

The authority was reacting to reports by the Democratic Nursing Organisation of South Africa which claimed on Wednesday that the x-ray department at the hospital had been closed since May 8 this year due to possible radiation leaks.

The union said all x-ray staff members were on two months' special leave as it was suspected they had been exposed to high radiation levels.

On Friday‚ the authority said it had launched a multidisciplinary investigation into alleged radiation exposure at the X-ray department.

It said blood samples were taken and were being analysed to confirm whether staff members were over-exposed to radiation.

It said the outcome of the tests would be available next Tuesday.

"There is no need to put staff on special leave for two months‚" the authority said.

However‚ the authority said the x-ray equipment was found to be non-compliant with regulatory requirements owing to a lack of scheduled maintenance and quality assurance.

“The x-ray equipment was rendered inoperable until such time that it meets the requisite standards.”

Portia Nkambule‚ acting CEO at SAHPRA‚ said the mandate of the authority was to ensure that the health of the patients‚ staff and public was not compromised in any way.



Source: TMG Digital.

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