Paramedics fear for their lives as attacks on EMS crews continue

Attacks on emergency medical services staff in the Western Cape continue with two teams of paramedics targetted attacked in separate incidents in the space of a week.

On Wednesday a team of paramedics was held at gunpoint while responding to an emergency in Khayelitsha and on Saturday another group was attacked, also at gunpoint, robbed of their belongings and physically assaulted.

Head of EMS at Western Cape Health Department, Dr Shaheem De Vries spoke to Kieno Kammies on Monday morning.

The attack was quite brutal. They assaulted him physically, held a gun in his mouth and robbed him of his cellphone and wallet as well as all the equipment in the vehicle.

Dr Shaheem De Vries, Head of EMS at Western Cape Health Department

De Vries says the situation has created tensions within the department where the emergency response team are starting to fear for their lives and management teams are attempting to contain the situation.

Emotions are high and when emotions are high talks gear toward ultimatums and binary choices.

Dr Shaheem De Vries, Head of EMS at Western Cape Health Department

To hear the rest of the conversation, listen below:


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