South Africa: Martha Marais, 76, Who Was Tied to Hospital Bench Gets Relief SA Probe Continues

The 76-year-old woman who was tied to a bench at Mamelodi Hospital without receiving treatment, will receive healthcare and counselling services at Steve Biko Academic Hospital, according to the Gauteng Department of Health.

In May, 2019, Martha Marais was restrained under a bench and left to lie on the floor.

The incident caused a furore and led to intervention from newly appointed Gauteng Health MEC, Dr Bandile Masuku, and Minister of Health Zweli Mkhize.

Masuku visited the family on Thursday evening and promised that Marais would receive quality healthcare.

'MEC Masuku assured the family in the presence of the HRC (Human Rights Commission) that the patient will receive quality healthcare (medical and emotional counselling) at Steve Biko Academic Hospital, and not Mamelodi Hospital, where the incident happened," Masuku's spokesperson, Kwara Kekana, said in a statement.

According to Kwara, the meeting was held in the presence of a representative from the South African Human Rights Commission, which launched its own investigation into the incident.

"As a department, we remain committed to ensuring that our citizens receive quality healthcare and are treated with dignity when visiting our facilities," Masuku said.

"We are committed to ensuring openness and transparency in our dealings. We are eager to work with all the stakeholders, including Chapter 9 institutions."

In June, Masuku announced that a security guard, two doctors and a nurse had been placed on special leave following an investigation into the incident.

The Marais family also laid charges of assault against the hospital.


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