Fire that gutted North West's Christiana Hospital caused by human error, report finds | News24

2022-06-15 14:39:33 By : Ms. Cherry Fan

A forensic investigation by the North West health department revealed that human error caused the fire that gutted Christiana Hospital in September.

The fire swept through the hospital on 8 September and the provincial government immediately launched an investigation. Patients were referred to clinics and community healthcare centres for medical attention.

North West Health MEC Madoda Sambatha released a report on the forensic investigation that sought to establish the cause of the fire and the extent of the damage at Christiana Hospital.

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"There are two critical findings into the investigation of the fire that destroyed the hospital. Firstly, we now know from the report that the fire was caused by human error. Then, the good news is that the physical structure specifically the walls are still intact. Hence the work of restoring the facility will be easier than initially thought." 

Sambatha said rebuilding the hospital was expected to be completed at the end of 2022.

"This permanent facility will have a 50-bed capacity with two theatres for minor operations," Sambatha said.

FNB was sponsoring the repairs with R1.3 million, Sambatha said.

Josy Sehloho, FNB's regional director for business and the public sector, said the project was being funded through the bank's Disaster Relief Fund.

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Sambatha said as a temporary measure the department was finalising plans to construct prefabricated structures so hospital services can resume while the building was being repaired.

The structure will include a 24-hour emergency department with a three-bed capacity and out-patient department with a four-bed capacity. It will also have a three-bed obstetric care unit with an additional four beds for post-natal and ante-natal care.

"The total will be 28 patient beds and four office and storage rooms. This is targeted to be completed by the end of March 2022," Sambatha said.

Once the permanent structure is built, the temporary prefabricated structures will be used as a gateway clinic as the current Christiana Town clinic is located at the municipal offices.

"It can also serve as an 'overflow' facility in the event of the hospital being full, or serve as a rehabilitation centre for chronic patients, severe acute malnutrition, cerebrovascular accident patients," he said.

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