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Kimberley Hospital Hit Hard by Water Outage

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Kimberley Hospital was hit hard by the water supply interruption in Kimberley but are recovering and all operations are expected to soon return to normal.

There has been several complaints on Saturday that Kimberley Hospital has no backup water tanks and that the water supply from Sol Plaatje Municipality to the hospital has not been restored yet.  After speaking to Richard Jones, acting CEO of Kimberley Hospital, and Thoko Riet from Sol Plaatje Municipal Communications it was confirmed that the water supply was restored and KH is actively working to restore all operations to normal. 

Richard Jones and Thoko Riet quickly responded to questions about the water situation on Saturday afternoon.  Thoko Riet personally contacted KH to confirm that the water supply from Sol Plaatje to KH is indeed back up and Richard Jones personally attended to the query immediately.

It is good to know that there are persons from both Sol Plaatje Municipality & Kimberley Hospital who cares and gladly took time on a Saturday afternoon to personally get involved.

STATEMENT FROM RICHARD JONES, ACTING CEO OF
KIMBERLEY HOSPITAL

Kimberley Hospital has been hit extremely badly by the mains water outage since last Thursday. Things are beginning to return to normal during Saturday as the water pressure returned and the onsite water storage tanks are refilling.

The Hospital has a range of bulk water storage tanks, in terms of a large underground dam has well as large plastic tanks on the roof and other key areas.
However, the volumes of water used by the hospital when it is fully operational are significant, and typically the water stores will last less than 24 hours even when water saving measures are implemented.

In addition to the normal water usage you can expect in any building (basins, toilets, etc), the hospital has critical equipment that are high water consumers. These include the autoclaves used to sterilize all theater equipment, the reverse osmosis machines used for renal dialysis, and the laundry to provide clean linen for the wards.

As soon as the hospital is aware of potential cut to water supplies the it institutes strict water conservation techniques, including shutting down the boilers and laundry, as well as cancelling all non-emergency theater operations. This was done on Thursday, resulting in no elective theater operations for two days and no laundry cleaned for the same period.

The hospital ran out of critical theater instrument packs on several occasions and management are very grateful to the private sector hospitals for coming to its aid and autoclaving instrument packs – especially those used for emergency caesarean section. The hospital autoclaves are now running again and additional instrument packs are being sterilized.

The boilers are being fired up tonight (Saturday) and the laundry will be running on Sunday.

The hospital is extremely grateful to the Military for tanking in water on Thursday and Friday. Each tanker full of water lasts about 15 minutes, and every drop was essential. Unfortunately they could not assist over Friday night and on Saturday.
During the two day outage the toilets became inoperable for much of the time, making life for patients and staff very very difficult.

The hospital could not simply close like many businesses were able to do. Hospital management are extremely grateful to the patients and the staff for their forbearance and managing through this very difficult period.
We pray that this is over and that it will never happen again.

Richard Jones
Acting CEO at Kimberley Hospital”

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