Eastern Cape Health MEC, Helen Sauls-August, has made R10m available to "improve mental healthcare" in the province. "The plan includes the recruitment of three psychiatrists, 20 psychiatric nurses, four psychologists and 16 registered nurses," department spokesperson, Lwandile Sicwetsha is quoted on AlgoaFM as saying. He said the plan is also to expand the scope of mental health service providers to include community-based mental health programmes.
Sicwetsha said these appointments would be made before the end of the current financial year.
"Improving mental health facilities is receiving high priority this financial year and has been translated into increasing the number of mental reviews boards from three to five to cover the five regional geographic areas," said Sauls-August.
The report says the announcement by the MEC comes in the wake of the findings by the Health Ombudsman, Professor Malegapuru Mokgoba, who found in a recent report that there were systemic challenges at Tower Hospital in Fort Beaufort.
"Going forward the department is responding to the great demand for acute mental beds and upgrading mental health care facilities across the province," Sauls-August said.
[link url="https://www.algoafm.co.za/article/local/96578/ec-health-dept-to-employ-more-mental-health-practitioners-"]AlgoaFM report[/link]