Baragwanath revamps admissions ward


24 July 2013

Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital, South Africa’s biggest hospital and one of the biggest in the world, has opened a revamped medical admissions ward that will help the Soweto, Johannesburg facility cope better with its heavy patient load.

Gauteng Health MEC Hope Papo, speaking at an opening ceremony on Tuesday, said the hospital needed to have a fully functional admissions ward as it was one of the busiest hospitals in the country.

Papo said the opening of the revamped Medical Admissions Ward 20 would go a long way towards boosting staff morale.

“The relatives of patients who are treated at this hospital leave this facility with a clear impression of how their loved ones will be treated. In other words, their experience is guided by the care that their relatives receive.”

The Department of Internal Medicine at Chris Hani Baragwanath is the biggest in the Southern Hemisphere, with 700 beds.

Papo said that despite the fact that Bara was an academic hospital, they continued to experience a large number of Level One patients coming to the hospital.

“For historical reasons, patients who are supposed to be seen at clinics continue flocking to this hospital.

“We are steadily moving away from that era. We have come up with an enhancement plan, which will be implemented at 20 of our hospitals,” he said, describing the plan as a blueprint to stabilise hospital services in the province.

Clinical managers, Papo said, had to ensure that clinicians took more responsibility and accountability for clinical decisions, and for the effective and efficient management and availability of resources. It was important to have reliable, up-to-date and credible information on each of the clinical and other service units in order to make informed service delivery decisions.

Papo said Gauteng hade prioritised strengthening management and leadership through increased delegation and authority to hospital CEOs. This would be achieved by empowering CEOs through providing a contingency budget for emergency procurement and delivery of non-negotiable items on an urgent basis to ensure that there were no shortages of critical items.