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A year after the fire, there’s little progress at Charlotte ...

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A year after the fire, there’s little progress at Charlotte Maxeke hospital

On top of missed deadlines and debt, it now faces treatment backlogs and mounting staff and equipment crises

Ufrieda Ho

The Charlotte Maxeke Johannesburg Academic Hospital (CMJAH) caught fire on April 17 2021. A year later the city’s once premier public-sector hospital is still fighting for its life.

On what should be a busy Friday morning this autumn, things are muted at the facility on the Parktown ridge, a landmark since it opened in 1979. There are no wailing ambulance sirens or spinning emergency lights rushing patients to the hospital. Ambulances stopped coming a year ago when the casualty department closed. It hasn’t reopened.

A lone security guard sits in the foyer at casualty. Her only company is a sign for “porters” propped up against a wall...

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