EC Health extends Life Esidimeni Kirkwood contract

The Eastern Cape Health Department has assured mental healthcare patients at Life Esidimeni Kirkwood that their lives are not in danger with the end of the health facility's contract.

The lives of mental healthcare patients at Life Esidimeni Kirkwood are not under threat due to the expiring of the contract at the end of September, said the provincial department.

In a statement on Tuesday, the department said the contract extension with the healthcare facility has been approved for another three months, while the department looks for suitable service providers for mental health care service.

The mental services at the facility will not be disrupted during this period and no patients will be moved to any unregistered facility at the directive of the department during this period. The three months extension period is to ensure that a credible, suitable mental healthcare provider is appointed, said the Health MEC's spokesperson Lwandile Sicwetsha.

The search for service providers will include the new bid for provision of chronic mental health services, persons with severe mental health and disabilities and community based rehabilitation services.

The department will not endanger the life of patients by placing them with unregistered non- governmental organisations. The department is committed to the mental act provision of human rights based management of mental care services user, said Sicwetsha.

Source: South African Government News Agency

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