Groote Schuur and Mediclinic join hands

Posted on 22 September 2017

In September, doctors at Mediclinic Milnerton – in partnership with Groote Schuur hospital and the Department of Health – performed cataract removal procedures on eight patients. These life-changing surgeries marked the beginning of a large-scale Corporate Social Investment project focusing on public and private collaboration.

‘Healthcare is everyone’s responsibility. I’m really excited that our team, the doctors and the staff that work here offered up their time to provide service to the community,’ says Alvina Simpson, hospital general manager at Mediclinic Milnerton.

Public healthcare patients with failing eyesight who require cataract procedures can wait up to two years for surgery. During this time they struggle to face the challenges of daily life because without intervention their eyesight will keep deteriorating.

‘I was so excited when I found out I’d been selected,’ said Mrs Gamieldien from her hospital bed while awaiting surgery. ‘I’ve been struggling with cataracts for the last three years. This has prevented me from doing my embroidery.’ After the operation, her daughter Yumnha said her mother was overjoyed to have completely regained eyesight in her affected eye.

Another daughter who is thrilled with this far-reaching CSI initiative is Lorraine Petersen from Mitchell’s Plain. ‘My mother wouldn’t really go out before her cataract operation because she had lost her confidence,’ she explains. ‘I’m very glad she was selected for the surgery. She’s looking forward to being able to enjoy her grandchildren’s school concerts again – and to read the subtitles on TV.’

Miss Harris, a charity worker at a local children’s hospital, says her operation was ‘just magical’. ‘Dr Stander said I can drive myself home afterwards so I’ll be back behind the wheel of my car before you know it,’ she says happily.

For Mrs Afrika, the procedure has made a huge difference to her quality of life. ‘The first thing I’m going to do when I get home is look at myself in the mirror!’ she beams. ‘ I can’t wait to be able to do my hair and make-up properly again.’

The next stage of operations as part of this public and private collaboration will occur in October at Mediclinic Stellenbosch, Mediclinic Vergelegen and Mediclinic Panorama hospitals.

Published in CSI

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