St Augustine and Kingsway hospitals to reopen after COVID-19 outbreak

The two Netcare hospitals were in the spotlight in April after staff and patients tested positive for COVID-19.

St Augustine and Kingsway hospitals to reopen after COVID-19 outbreak

Two KwaZulu-Natal hospitals that were hardest-hit by the COVID-19 pandemic will reopen on Monday, Netcare revealed.

St Augustine Hospital – situated in Berea, Durban – as well as Amanzimtoti’s Kingsway Hospital were both closed in April after an alarming number of healthcare workers and patients tested positive for the coronavirus.

KZN government gives hospitals the greenlight

On Saturday, Netcare’s regional director in the area, Craig Murphy revealed that the two hospitals have been cleared to reopen by the provincial health department.

“Since Netcare St Augustine’s and Netcare Kingsway hospitals were closed for new patient admissions in April, Netcare has been engaging and working closely, and on an ongoing basis, with the KZN DoH on all matters pertaining to Covid-19 at the hospitals as well as planning for their reopening,” he said in a statement.

“Preparations for both the hospitals to reopen on Monday are currently underway.

“Last week, the hospitals had already further enhanced their disinfecting and decontaminating programmes of all the facilities on their premises. Doctors at Netcare St Augustine’s and Netcare Kingsway hospitals will also again be consulting from their rooms as from Monday.

“We are pleased that Netcare St Augustine’s and Netcare Kingsway hospitals can again offer much needed specialised medical care to the communities they serve, and we sincerely thank the communities for their patience and understanding over the past number of weeks.”

Craig Murphy

Private hospitals ready to reopen

St Augustine was the first of the two hospitals to court controversy after it had emerged that 66 people within the hospital had contracted COVID-19. This included 45 staff, with a total of six deaths recorded.

The hospital was closed on 8 April, a week before the same occurred at Kingsway, following another outbreak.

National Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize ordered a probe into the two hospitals, amid allegations that healthcare workers had not been furnished with sufficient protective gear.

Netcare hired an independent specialist to assit with investigations into the matter.

Murphy says the probe commenced some time ago.

“We have not received their final report. Discussing or releasing the findings of the independent investigation falls within the ambit of the department.”

Craig Murphy

KwaZulu-Natal is among the provinces with the highest COVID-19 caseloads in the country – at 1 253 infections and 42 deaths. The province has also recorded 420 recoveries.

In total, South Africa has 8 895 confirmed cases, with the death toll now sitting at 178, with 3 153 recoveries.

Source : The South African More