Dept. investigates case of woman who is alleged to have given birth at door of Burgersfort Clinic

South Africa: The Limpopo Department of Health has sent a team to investigate an incident of a woman who is alleged to have delivered a baby at the gate of the Burgersfort Clinic in Sekhukhune District.

South Africa: The Limpopo Department of Health has sent a team to investigate an incident of a woman who is alleged to have delivered a baby at the gate of the Burgersfort Clinic in Sekhukhune District.

There is also a video depicting community members who are supposedly waiting for the clinic to open at 7H00 harassing a professional nurse that is trying to assist the woman who seems to have already given birth 15 minutes after her arrival at the gate of the clinic.

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The department calls on community members in the area to be calm while giving the investigation process a chance. While the department is investigating, it calls on community members to take note of the following;

1. Burgersfort Clinic is now a day clinic though it used to operate 24 hours. The clinic has since stopped operating 24 hours two years ago because of high criminal elements who were threatening nurses during night shifts. While the department is working with the community and government stakeholders, such as SAPS, to solve the crime issues, community members are still advised to utilize nearby clinics for night emergencies.

2. Pregnant women are advised not to wait until they are about to deliver before visiting a health facility. It takes between 8 and 16 hours for a woman to deliver a child from the moment of feeling the labour pains, depending on the number of children a woman has already delivered. In this case, it is alleged that the woman delivered after only 15 minutes of arrival at the gate of the facility.

3. The department wishes to encourage pregnant women to visit health facilities for antenatal consultations during pregnancy because it is during these sessions that they are made aware of facilities they can deliver at in line with the department’s maternal health standards.

The department has a constitutional and service obligation in line with its protocols to ensure that women deliver babies in an environment that is not only safe but also dignified. To this end, the department’s employees are encouraged at all material times to enforce these protocols. Hence the department always decisively with any of its employees who are found to have impeded it from fulfilling this obligation.