Patients will suffer as Gauteng cuts doctors’ overtime

Issued by Jack Bloom MPL – DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Health
21 Feb 2024 in Press Statements

Patients will suffer as the Gauteng Health Department is clamping down on overtime for doctors.

According to a circular issued by Mr Lesiba Malotana on 15 February:

“The Department is currently facing a number of challenges on the approval and management of Commuted Overtime. Therefore, it has become necessary to withdraw the delegation to approve overtime applications for the upcoming 2024/25 financial year.

The Corporate Services team is diligently reviewing the policy and procedures governing the approval process. Once this review is finalised, the revised guidelines will promptly be communicated to all Accounting Officers.”

This means that doctors’ overtime will be cut drastically from 1 April, which is the start of the new financial year. It will cause short-staffing at night, on weekends, and on public holidays.

It’s a blow for many doctors who rely on the extra overtime money.

It is unclear why the approval of overtime has become problematic – is it poor administration, or is the Department trying to save money at the expense of doctors and patients?

The DA calls on the Department to reconsider this move and find a way for overtime to continue in a properly approved way.