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Hospital worker’s death worries Labour Department

by lloyd last modified 2008-10-29 15:25

Hospital worker’s death worries Labour Department

29 October 2008


The Labour Department has expressed concern at the death this week of a Morningside Medi-Clinic employee reportedly from a virus which she had contracted from a patient while in the line of duty.

Labour spokesman Page Boikanyo said today (Thur) the fact that Maria Mokubung, a cleaner at the hospital, had died due to an illness suffered at a workplace was cause for concern for the department.

“While we are as yet unable to establish whether the deceased was a permanent employee of the hospital or a contract worker, any workplace-related illness or injury – let alone a fatality – is always viewed by the department as being against the spirit of our occupational health and safety laws which safeguard the well-being of all employees regardless of their status. We hope the employer concerned will follow the necessary procedures and report the incident as required by the law,” he said.

The Department would also like to urge the trade unions and the health and safety committees to play their role in the safety of workers at the workplace..

According to reports, Makubung is believed to have been infected with the rat-borne Arenavirus after coming into contact with its first victim, Zambian Cecilia van Deventer, who died last month. The virus has also claimed the lives of a paramedic and a nurse respectively who had treated Van Deventer.


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