The Motherwell NU8 Clinic was shut down by nurses and residents yesterday who have refused to reopen the medical centre until staff shortages and safety measures are addressed by the Department of Health.
The closure was supported by more than 50 residents and five nurses, who sat outside the clinic refusing to go in yesterday.
Provincial health spokesman Sizwe Kupelo condemned the shutdown.
“No one has the right to close healthcare services. The issue of shortages is being attended to,” he said.
A nurse, who asked not to be named, said there were only two professional nurses and three community service nurses at the clinic.
“The number of nurses is like a drop in the ocean for a clinic that serves more than 4 000 patients a month.
“We can’t continue working like this – we need more staff members.”
The nurse said the clinic also did not even have a telephone, which was crucial for referring patients to a hospital.
“We use our cellphones and there is no alarm or panic button. We don’t feel safe.”
Resident Zandisile Mtsina, 52, said patients started lining up at 6am daily but often left at 4pm without being helped.