Doctor shortage forces leading African children's hospital to refuse emergenciesBMJ 2004; 329 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.329.7459.190 (Published 22 July 2004) Cite this as: BMJ 2004;329:190
- Pat Sidley
An acute shortage of doctors at Africa's largest children's hospital, the Red Cross Children's Hospital in Cape Town, has forced the hospital to begin refusing emergency admissions.
The hospital had to close its emergency intake wards at night because it had only five doctors doing the work of 14, as vacant posts lie unfilled. In South Africa graduating doctors must undergo a community service programme for two years before they can practise on their own, but the hospital says the Department of Health has failed to place any graduating doctors at the hospital this year.
The hospital's decision has also galvanised the …