The Gauteng department of health has stopped the services of a “sessional” doctor based at the Dr Yusuf Dadoo hospital after he allegedly sexually assaulted a patient there earlier this week.
Gauteng health MEC Gwen Ramokgopa said upon hearing about the matter, hospital management assisted the victim and alerted the police’s family violence, sexual assault and child abuse unit (FCS).
A case of sexual assault was opened.
The victim was referred to Leratong hospital’s crisis centre for clinical assessment, trauma counselling and collection of evidence.
The sessional doctor was not a fulltime employee of the hospital but worked certain hours and shifts.
Ramokgopa expressed shock and sadness about the “horrifying” alleged assault, saying the incident should send a strong message to health employees.
“I am saddened by these allegations and it’s difficult for me to comprehend how a professional, entrusted to look after our vulnerable patients, commits such a heinous act.
“Although we are allowing the police to do their work, we should send a strong message to our employees and community members at large that sexual assaults are a human rights violation and should be strongly condemned and the perpetrators should face the might of the law,” she said.
She said the department has terminated the services of the alleged perpetrator with immediate effect.
“This incident should not have happened in the first place as doctors are trained to care for our patients and not abuse them. The implicated doctor will also be reported to the Health Profession Council of South Africa for his alleged misconduct,” the MEC said.
Democratic Alliance shadow health MEC Jack Bloom feels investigations should determine how the incident happened at a state hospital.
“I commend the Gauteng health department for acting swiftly to stop the services of this sessional doctor,” he said.