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'Doctors under fire'

05 Nov 2019

In 2015 the highest claim would have been in the region of R20-m but it is not uncommon nowadays to see a claim being as high as R50-m to R80-m, said SASOG spokesperson, Heidi Kruger. In a 2017 survey conducted by SASOG among its members, of the 330 responses received, 220 specialists said they would stop practising if the litigation crisis did not improve within five years. Kruger said the law reforms SASOG was seeking would involve working with other societies as well the Health Department, seeking mediation as a first resort, a dedicated multidisciplinary medico-legal authority and education of the legal fraternity around scientific matters.

SASOG has also taken several measures to improve the quality of practice by its members, aimed at bringing down the extent of litigation. One of these is the BetterObs programme, which includes a set of 19 protocols to be adhered to by all members of the delivery team - nurses, midwives, paediatricians and others.

  • The Gauteng Health MEC Bandile Masuku announced the appointed 11 CEOs at state hospitals as part of its goal to improve governance, patient experience, staff morale and clinical services. The department found no suitable candidates for Bertha Gxowa Hospital, Jubilee Hospital and Heidelberg Hospital, even after re-advertising the posts. CEOs for these positions will now be headhunted.