‘I couldn’t breathe. She said come back Monday’



October 13, 2016
‘I couldn’t breathe. She said come back Monday’

KWAAD: Rachel, 60

Woman, 60, with breathing difficulties refused medical assistance at clinic.

An elderly woman says haar bors raak sommer benoud when she remembers how she was turned away from a clinic where she went for help when she struggled to breathe.

Rachel Africa, 60, says she went to Bot River Clinic last week Friday because her chest was tight and she needed to go on the nebulizer.

“But the receptionist Lynn told me they are full and I must come back the Monday,” says Rachel.

She says friends and neighbours came to her aid.

“I struggled the whole weekend. I had to borrow an inhaler from one lady and I went on the nebulizer at somebody else’s house,” says Rachel.

When she went back to the clinic on Monday she was asked why she didn’t come for help earlier.

“When I told the staff member what happened, she said ‘Lynn’ can’t just show [turn] people away,” says Rachel.

“They should send her away because she causes lots of problems.”

Health Department Overberg Region spokesperson Natasha Peterson says Rachel was given an appointment for Monday as she wasn’t seen as an emergency case when she visited the clinic on Friday.

“The Department’s appointment system is there to assist patients and reduce waiting times of patients such as chronic patients,” says Peterson.

She added that ill patients should be escorted to the nurse immediately to be evaluated and treated.

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