By Michelle Gumede, 13 December 2016, businesslive.co.za.
Gauteng Health MEC Qedani Mahlangu on Tuesday opened the antenatal unit at Leratong Hospital in the West Rand, following a R10m facelift.
The upgrade commenced in 2011 funded by the SA Medical and Education Foundation (SAME) and was supported by corporate and individual sponsors.
Adcock Ingram, Sibanye Gold and Aard mining equipment donated a total of R1.5m for the renovations.
The “worst” units — blamed for infant deaths — were renovated first.
Tyrone Pols, of the SAME foundation said: “Quite a while back you would always hear stories of babies dying, stillborn deaths that would occur because of not having enough monitoring and diagnostic equipment.”
He emphasised that the new equipment would save lives while also ensuring that doctors and nurses have what they need to be able to do their jobs properly.
According to StatsSA there were 21,908 perinatal deaths in 2014, representing a 3.6% decline from the 22,274 deaths reported in 2013.
Two thirds (65,8%) of perinatal deaths were stillbirths and the remaining 34,3% were early neonatal deaths.
SAME said the upgrades at Lerafong included foetal non-stress test machines used to perform non-invasive tests in pregnancies without causing stress to the foetus.
The hospital has also received a colposcope machine, monitors that measure key vitals, new examination beds, an electric lithotomy bed as well as full furnishings for doctors’ offices and nurses’ areas.
“While we had put in equipment like vital sign monitors to detect babies heart beats and health, one of the most important areas we did in antenatal is the colposcope room,” said Pols.
A colposcope machine is used to detect cervical cancer, the biggest killer of women between the ages of 15 and 40. The cancer is 100% curable if detected early.
Vicki St Quintin, corporate affairs manager at Adcock Ingram, said the company “has its roots in Krugersdorp, having sprung from EJ Adcock Pharmacy in 1890”.
St Quintin said Adcock Ingram has been supporting Leratong Hospital since 2013 in line with its strategic objectives of “adding value to life”.
To date, over R20m has been invested in the Leratong hospital since 2011.