WILLEM Labuschagne waited with a piece of wood skewered into his hand for three hours at the Vryheid Hospital, before he gave up and left.
Willem had been using a hammer, when the head of the hammer fell off and he accidentally drove the handle of the hammer into his hand with considerable force.
Fearing that he may do more damage if he attempted to remove the wood himself, seeking relief from the pain and knowing that he may need antibiotics to prevent infection, Willem sought help at Vryheid Hospital.
The nurses took his blood pressure and saw to it that x-rays were taken, but then services at the hospital came to a standstill.
“There were about four people ahead of him in the queue to see the doctor, but after three hours no one had been attended to. One of the men waiting in the queue had broken his shoulder in two places and was in a lot of pain. We were told that there was no doctor on duty as they were in a meeting about wages. I find this unacceptable. Meetings need to be scheduled outside of operating hours, and not while there are patients waiting for medical attention,” said Bianca, Willem’s wife.
“After waiting three hours, my husband asked to see the hospital manager and reported his dissatisfaction. Patients were not being prioritised at the hospital and this needs to change.”
The Vryheid Herald reported this incident to the hospital’s communications officer, Nqobile Mbatha, who promised to contact the Labuschagne family and ensure that Willem receives medical care if it was still needed.