Nearly seven hours: that's how long it takes to get treated at Pretoria hospital
It takes an average of nearly seven hours to register, see a doctor and collect medicine at Steve Biko Academic hospital in Pretoria.
That's according to Gauteng health MEC Bandile Masuku, who revealed recorded average waiting times at the facility while replying to questions in the Gauteng legislature on Tuesday.
Masuku was answering a query from DA member of the provincial legislature Jack Bloom, who said in a statement on Wednesday: "According to Masuku, the current recorded average waiting times are as follows: time to register, two hours; time to see a doctor, two hours 46 minutes; time to collect medicine, one hour 58 minutes.
"This totals six hours 44 minutes, which is the average figure, but many patients wait longer than this which is why they come very early in the morning to be in the front of the queue," Bloom said.
Bloom said while priority one patients at casualty were seen almost immediately, priority two patients (the "walking wounded") waited on average an hour and 36 minutes.
"These long waiting times are of great concern. Some patients even have to return the next day."
He said while he agreed that pressure needed to be taken off the Steve Biko hospital, there was a need for upgraded alternative health facilities "otherwise people will continue to bypass them".
"The hospital needs to fill staff vacancies, fix broken equipment and use technology to become more efficient," Bloom said.