Highly respected nephrologist dies at Garden City Hospital in Johannesburg

Iavan Pijoos Journalist
Dr Hendrik Viljoen had practised at Netcare Garden City Hospital for more than 27 years.
Dr Hendrik Viljoen had practised at Netcare Garden City Hospital for more than 27 years.
Image: Annie Busse via Facebook

A highly respected nephrologist, Dr Hendrik Viljoen, who performed hundreds of kidney and pancreas transplants, has died at the Netcare Garden City Hospital in Mayfair, Johannesburg.

He was found dead in his doctor's room on Wednesday morning, Gauteng police said.

Police spokesperson Capt Kay Makhubele said an inquest docket had been opened.

Viljoen had practised at the hospital for more than 27 years.

MD of Netcare’s hospital division Jacques du Plessis said Viljoen was born in Leiden in the Netherlands in 1955 but his family later relocated to SA.

Viljoen completed his MBChB with a distinction in psychiatry in 1983 at the University of the Free State, formerly known as University of the Orange Free State (UOFS).

Dr Viljoen had also trained in internal medicine at the Universitas and Pelonomi academic hospitals.

There he attained experience with sub-specialities including clinical haematology, pulmonology, cardiology, gastroenterology, endocrinology, nephrology and rheumatology, Du Plessis said.

After obtaining his qualification, Viljoen worked in the department of internal medicine in Bloemfontein as a physician while sub-specialising in nephrology.

He later also worked as the head of the department of nephrology at UOFS.

Du Plessis said Viljoen was instrumental in training the next generation of medical professionals and left behind a strong academic legacy.

“Having authored numerous academic articles and presented papers at international conferences, Dr Viljoen greatly contributed to the field of nephrology and meaningfully touched the lives of many thousands of patients who benefited from his considerable expertise over decades of service.

“He participated in over 600 kidney and 25 combined pancreas-kidney transplants during his career. His passing is an immense loss to the Netcare family and his fellow specialists, and he will be greatly missed.

“On behalf of the staff and management of Netcare Garden City Hospital, we wish to convey our deepest condolences to his family, friends and colleagues,” Du Plessis said.

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