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HLATIKHULU – Patients at the Hlatikhulu Government Hospital are in danger of starving as the facility has run out of food supply, with patients being fed thin porridge for supper.

It has emerged that in the wake of the situation, patients admitted to the facility have been advised to get their relatives to supply them with foodstuffs or alternatively send people to buy them food at nearby outlets.
Information gathered is that the hospital has been battling to pay its suppliers.

It could not be ascertained how much was owed to the suppliers.
This comes at a time when former politicians were recently paid millions as their ex-gratia payouts, something which has been questioned in many forums as certain suppliers have not been paid yet they had been owed for years.

Also, some schools are battling to keep children in classes as food rations have not been delivered.

A spot check conducted yesterday unearthed that some patients had been able to carry on with only a plate of soft porridge which was served in the morning.
A woman found at the maternity ward said even on the previous day, they were only served soft porridge for supper.
“I am really starving. I had to call some of my relatives from Nhlangano to bring me something to eat, and they promised to come this afternoon,” said a woman who had recently delivered her baby.

As a result of the prevailing hunger situation at the hospital, the woman said she was forced to send another patient to buy her fermented maize drink (emahewu) to supplement the soft porridge she was served for during breakfast.


This publication further discovered that yesterday at the kitchen, there was a limited supply of food which could not last the facility more than one serving.
Even then, it was gathered that the little food left did not have all the necessary ingredients, a situation which was said to be dangerous for the health of the patients.

For instance, there was limited supply of basic food items such as samp, and sources of protein.
A staffer, who spoke on condition of anonymity, disclosed that the situation was so dire such that patients might have nothing to eat from today onwards.
The employee had indicated during the interview conducted yesterday that the facility’s storage only had food that could only last them up to supper. “I’m afraid that the situation could get worse if management fails to provide anything as earlier promised. We don’t have anything to cook for tomorrow (today) onwards,” said the staffer.


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