23 May 2019

South Africa: Fire Aftermath - Gauteng Hospital Staff and Patients Describe Panic and Chaos During Evacuation

Patients, staff and the community of Jabulani say they were shocked, but not totally surprised, that a fire had broken out on Monday at the human resources building of the Bheki Mlangeni District Hospital in Soweto.

Patients at the Bheki Mlangeni District Hospital in Soweto said they witnessed a commotion as management struggled to move people to safety when a fire broke out there on Monday.

A total of 86 patients were transferred to other health centres in Gauteng. The Lenasia South Clinic received the most patients, with 30 requiring medical attention.

Four patients were transferred to high care at the Chris Hani Academic Hospital on Monday, and another 15 were transferred to other units in the hospital.

Eight patients were taken to the Rahima Moosa Mother and Child Hospital for gynaecological attention and 13 were transferred to the Sterkfontein Hospital. It was not immediately clear how many patients, if any, were transferred to other health centres.

"Bheki Mlangeni hospital is currently on divert and we would like to appeal to the health users to utilise surrounding healthcare facilities till further notice," the hospital said in a statement on Monday.

"I was more terrified by the commotion that ensued afterwards....

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