Durban – Five more hospitals will be exempt from load shedding.
This is the word from the Department of Health, following outrage that patients’ health was at risk at state medical facilities as a result of the rolling blackouts.
Department spokesperson Foster Mohale said the department, together with Eskom, has implemented the long-awaited exemption of North West hospitals, which include Taung Hospital and Ganyesa Hospital.
"This has pushed the total number of exempted from 72 to 77. This is work-in-progress and the inclusion of North West hospitals is part of the commitment made by Minister of Health Dr Joe Phaahla that no province will be left behind.
"Although, due to technical challenges, some health facilities will take time to be exempted," Mohale said.
The department would keep the public informed about the progress made towards hospital exclusions around the country.
"We are working closely with the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) to conduct feasibility studies on the roll-out of solar panels in the critical areas in health facilities as part of the energy mix to mitigate the impact of load shedding and overstraining the backup generators," Mohale said.
Last month, the department said it had given Eskom a list of 212 priority hospitals across the country to be considered for possible exclusion from load shedding on a phased approach.