Baragwanath Chris Hani Hospital. Picture: BUSINESS DAY
Baragwanath Chris Hani Hospital. Picture: BUSINESS DAY

Machinery breakdowns and staff shortages are cited among the reasons for a dramatic increase in the backlog for patients requiring surgery at the Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital‚ which is up to five years for a hip operation.

Gauteng health MEC Gwen Ramokgopa says 11‚736 patients are waiting for operations at the top state hospital.

She disclosed this information in an oral reply to questions by the DA’s Jack Bloom at a sitting of the Gauteng Legislature‚ he said in a statement on Wednesday.

Ramokgopa also said 1‚824 operations had been cancelled for various reasons at the hospital in 2016.

Bloom said: "The number has increased dramatically in the last two years as 4‚846 patients were waiting for surgery at the hospital in 2015‚ according to a previous reply to my questions in the Legislature.

"The surgery backlog should never have been allowed to grow so high at this hospital. Patients suffer when they have to wait so long for surgery. It is inhuman to ask people to wait five years for a hip operation."

Bloom called for special measures to be introduced to cut the surgery waiting lists‚ including extended operating hours and a partnership with the private health sector.

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