WC health minister invites anti-vaxxers to ‘see the dead bodies’
The provincial health minister, Dr Nomafrench Mbombo, who was a clinician for a long time before she became a politician, is reportedly ‘livid” at anti-vaxxers and encouraged them to ‘take a dead body tour’.
Come see for yourself – Mbombo
TimesLive reports that doctors and nurses in the Western Cape hear “regrets being expressed” by those same patients who chose not to be vaccinated and are now fighting for their lives.
“In all my career previously as a healthcare worker and clinician, then as an educator and a researcher, and now as a politician, I have never seen a disease that has so many people becoming not only opinionated, but also believing that they’re experts,” Mbombo said.
She said she “shares the frustration of healthcare workers who’re the ones being affected by vaccine hesitancy not just around the province, but the country as a whole”.
Comparing the current crisis with previous epidemics such as HIV, she said back then people “valued information they got from medical and healthcare experts”.
Vaccine hesitancy in South Africa
Mbombo is frustrated, as many people in South Africa receive crucial information on social media, reports 2OceansVibe.
“When you ask someone where they found the information they’re backing over the advice of trained medical professionals, they say ‘Facebook’, as if the social media site is somehow also a media outlet”, the publication writes.
Her response was also prompted after anti-vaxxers protested outside of the Grootte Schuur Hospital in Cape Town.
“If you don’t believe us, come and see for yourself — you will find 3 400 beds occupied by COVID-19 patients, many of whom chose not to get the vaccine,” Mbombo continued. “If you don’t understand 17 000 deaths from COVID-19 in the province, come to our mass facility centre in Tygerberg and see those 32 bodies that are there each day,” she added.
Mbombo said in December alone 45 health workers died in the Western Cape.
The provincial head of health Dr Keith Cloete, also pointed out that they were under “tremendous pressure every single day” and that “more and more they are treating people who are not vaccinated”.
The stories of regret
This makes it “very hard for that doctor or nurse to be treating someone with severe disease who had the opportunity to be vaccinated but did not take it. They can hear the stories of regret just before they get intubated, and that is the destruction of a life.”
“Health workers feel betrayed by that person and by those who are callously and irresponsibly influencing people not to get vaccinated,” he said.
South Africa recorded 13 251 cases on Wednesday. The 516 people that died of the disease pushed the death toll since the start of the pandemic beyond 80 000.
Alicia Adendorff is a reporter for Healthy Organic Lifestyle.