NEWS & ANALYSIS

Late placement of health grads cause for concern – Solidarity Youth

Organisation says national dept should resolve the crisis as soon as possible

Placement of health practitioners gives cause for concern – Solidarity Youth

10 January 2019

Solidarity Youth, Solidarity trade union’s youth wing, today expressed its concern about the placement process being followed by the Department of Health in deploying recently graduated health practitioners for service at hospitals for the year 2019.

This process had to be completed in 2018 but scores of doctors, nurses, dentists and other health practitioners, who have recently graduated, have not yet been placed, and this more than a week after they were meant to have started work,” Paul Maritz, Solidarity Youth Co-ordinator, said.

According to Maritz, it is disturbing that a country such as South Africa where there is such a major need for trained medical professionals, is treating graduated professionals in such a way.

In some cases, the practitioners had to relocate to centres hundreds of kilometres further afield, only to find out that there aren’t positions for them, contrary to what the national system indicated,” Maritz added.

According to concerned parents who contacted us, their children have reported to the hospital or district where they had been placed as per the ICSP system, but the authorities there have no knowledge of such placement, and they can’t assume their duties because no job contract is in place,” Maritz said. 

Maritz emphasised that graduates must be placed by 15 January, otherwise those positions would be filled. The graduates in question would then have to re-apply for placement later this year, or even only in 2020.

Solidarity Youth appeals to the National Department of Health to resolve the crisis as soon as possible to ensure that no person who has finished medically training is adversely affected for months on end. “So many people are currently looking for answers, and our own communication with the Health Department has been unsuccessful so far,” Maritz said.  

Although much has been said about a new start, it would appear as if the results are exactly the same as last year’s,” Maritz stressed.

Issued by Paul Maritz, Co-ordinator, Solidarity Youth, 10 January 2019