Health Department finally comes to party in negotiating doctors working hours

Ilne Markwat was the junior doctor from Paarl Hospital, who died in a car accident a few weeks ago. Carol Mostert, the woman in the other vehicle involved in an accident, died today, after incurring severe injuries as a result of that accident.

The junior doctor, who was killed on her way home from work, allegedly fell asleep behind the wheel, and collided with a bakkie, which Mostert and her fiance where travelling in .

Since this incident, Junior Doctors Association of South Africa has been putting pressure on the Health Department to revisit the hours that doctors work, which range from 30 to 40 hours per shift.

Pippa Hudson speaks to Dr. Michael van Niekerk, Secretary-General of Junior Doctors Association of South Africa.

Van Niekerk says they've been getting support from all over South Africa as well as from doctors internationally, and it seems the department is finally listening.

He says the Western Cape Department of Health has contacted them to come up with suggestions to help resolve this matter.

The suggestion thus far has been to curb the call at 24 hours, and still comply with 50 -60 hours maximum work.

Dr. Michael van Niekerk, Secretary-General of Junior Doctors Association of South Africa.

The main thing is that the department has realised that working more than 24 hours is absolutely detrimental and lethal for patients as well as doctors.

Dr. Michael van Niekerk, Secretary-General of Junior Doctors Association of South Africa.

We would like to empower junior doctors in saying that going beyond 30 hours, you are putting yourselves and patients live in danger.

Dr. Michael van Niekerk, Secretary-General of Junior Doctors Association of South Africa.

Listen to the full conversation below:

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