Striking nurses ‘attacked’ ambulance transporting child in critical condition to KZN hospital

Suthentira Govender Senior reporter
Striking nurses allegedly tried to prevent an ambulance transporting a critically ill child from entering Stanger Hospital
Striking nurses allegedly tried to prevent an ambulance transporting a critically ill child from entering Stanger Hospital
Image: IPSS Medical Rescue

Striking nurses allegedly attacked an ambulance transporting a child in critical condition to Stanger Hospital in KwaDukuza, KwaZulu-Natal, and assaulted a paramedic crew member on Wednesday.

IPSS Medical Rescue said its ambulance was pounced on by nurses at the entrance of the hospital.

“Nurses attempted to forcefully remove the young patient from our ambulance, but thankfully crew managed to get thr+ough to casualty with the patient,” said IPSS Medical.

“The crew was then prevented from leaving. Thanks to local security and KwaDukuza municipality peace officers, after some time our crews were out safely, although one member was assaulted but with no serious injuries.

“The critical child is safe and being attended to at the hospital.”

On Tuesday the provincial health department said it was experiencing disruptions to operations at some of its health facilities amid the National Health and Allied Workers' Union (Nehawu) strike.

“This industrial action has resulted in the blockage of access to various hospitals by certain individuals, which has hindered access to several facilities, as well as work stoppages following the intimidation and removal of staff from their posts and the burning of tyres.”

The department said emergency medical services had reported “serious challenges with moving around and transporting patients to and from healthcare facilities”.

“The department wishes to remind all its employees that, as healthcare professionals, they are classified as essential services, which means they are legally prohibited from embarking on industrial action.

“Contravention of this law could have dire circumstances on all involved individuals.

“Furthermore, those who took part in the illegal strike are reminded that the principle of ‘no work, no pay’ will apply.

“The department wishes to caution all members of the public as well as leaders and members of organised labour against breaking the law and the blocking of access routes and entrances to clinics and hospitals and all our institutions, as this could result in avoidable loss of lives and inconvenience to members of society.”


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