An improvement strategy for Health Services in Grabouw was discussed with residents during a public meeting held today, 7 March 2019. Western Cape Minister of Health, Dr Nomafrench Mbombo, along with senior officials for the Department of Health were in attendance to lead the discussion.
The improvement strategy focuses on services at Grabouw Community Day Centre (CDC) and in the surrounding area.
The Department recognises that Grabouw is a rapidly growing community. While planning for a significant extension to the CDC’s infrastructure is proceeding, several interim solutions are being rolled out, including:
- We will reconfigure the existing infrastructure to create a new 24 hour Emergency Care service on the current site
- The opening of the Emergency service will include the appointment of extra staff, comprising of doctors presence, Nurse Practitioners and trauma personnel to ensure a 24 hour service.
- Patients will benefit, since the Emergency care facility will lessen pressure on primary healthcare services, and should improve waiting times. Special attention will be given to registration and folder management processes.
- The current primary healthcare service will also be extended (week days from 7.30 to 19:00, and Saturdays until 13:00)
- Patient flow for maternal services will also be improved by reconfiguring the MOU space, and the current 24 hour MOU service will be sustained.
- Partnerships will be sought with farmers in the large number of surrounding farms, to improve the ability to reach farmworkers with healthcare services through the 41 home based carers currently working in the area. This type of solution lessens the pressure on facilities, and is a tried and tested approach.
Currently emergency patients requiring a higher level of care are referred to Helderberg or Caledon hospitals and transported by Emergency Medical Services (EMS).
The EMS service will be supported by extra dedicated capacity to take patients to Caledon hospital. The call centre at Bredasdorp was also recently moved to Caledon and will be further upgraded during the course of the year, ensuring better service. To further support this service, an improved cell tower is being erected in Caledon later this year.
“We want to ensure the residents in Grabouw that we are serious about delivering quality, person centred healthcare, and that is why we are here in this community with all relevant role-players to discuss the improvement strategy. We are fully aware of the challenges that patients experience at this facility, but I can assure the community that once this strategy is implemented, we will see improvement,” said Minister Mbombo.
A significant infrastructure upgrade and extension to the CDC is currently moving through the planning pipeline, which normally takes 5 – 7 years for upgrades of this nature. It is expected that the strategy discussed with residents will have a positive short-term impact in this rapidly growing community while the infrastructure upgrade is rolled out.