At WB State Hospital a Panado solves it all

Eileen van der Schyff

A front page article in Friday’s edition, which detailed a woman’s horror experience at the hands of a medical doctor and a nurse at the Walvis Bay state hospital, has opened a floodgate of complaints over the treatment people receive at the hands of medical staff at this hospital.

In Friday’s edition a woman said she went to hospital to have a cesarean wound that went septic treated. It required opening the wound. The woman was denied anaesthetics. She cried out in pain and was reprimanded not to be “a sissy”. When she went hysteric, she was chased away and told never to come back. The septic operation wound remained largely untreated.
Following publication on Friday, several people contacted namib times and complained about the generally poor service. Nurses being arrogant and rude, long hours waiting for treatment and dirty facilities were among the complaints received. One woman, whose relative was hospitalised last week, said her sister was living in fear as rats are making their nests in a certain quarter of the hospital, because it is never cleaned properly.
One woman phoned the namib times on Thursday. She was in tears, as her domestic assistant has been ill for several weeks now. She [the domestic assistant] made regular calls to the state hospital but every time she was just given a couple Panado tablets and told to go home.
“Her health was deteriorating by the day. I could not stand it any longer”, the woman said in tears. Not only was she left utterly frustrated, but she could not bear the woman’s suffering any longer.
“I decided to take my domestic assistant to a private hospital so that tests and X-rays can be conducted to see what is wrong with her”, the woman explained. Adding private medical treatment is expensive and she and her husband is living in a strict household where unnecessary expenses are cut to the bone.
The X-rays confirmed the woman had severe lung infection. According to the woman that was again just the prelude of the next frustrations with the Walvis Bay state hospital.
The private doctor gave a prescription of intravenous antibiotics to be administered by the state hospital.
“When I gave the nurse the prescription, she started to verbally attack us both, saying that because my employee saw a private doctor, she [the nurse] demands N$100 fine, before admission.”
When the woman responded angrily that this amounts to corruption, the nurse replied: “It is policy here”.
“When I challenged the nurse about this is policy, and for her to show me black on white this policy, she threatened us with the hospital’s security”. Adding they left the hospital, both in tears of pure humiliation and frustration.
The hospital did not relent. A few days later, the woman was admitted in the Walvis Bay state hospital but not before paying the N$100 fine.
When her employer phoned her to ask if all was well, she reported that she had no blanket and there was no coffee or tea. She was also not yet administered the intravenous antibiotics. She was in excruciating pain, but only got Panados for that.
”We are talking about human beings here. Animals get treated better at the veterinarian than humans do in state hospitals”, said the woman.

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