Students of the Free State School of Nursing (FSSON) contacted Bloemfontein Courant over complaints about the deteriorating conditions of their housing at the National District Hospital. The students expressed that they were made to live in unsanitary conditions that included uncollected rubbish in a facility that is falling apart.
“We as students are not happy with the conditions that we are forced to live in. We are also afraid to come forward,” said a student who wishes to remain anonymous. “The nurse’s home yard is dirty and the dustbins are not emptied regularly. The rooms are not in good condition and we are told to fix them from our own pockets. We are worried about our health as the environment’s hygiene is very poor,” the student explained.
According to Free State Health spokesperson, Mondli Mvambi, the students of House Idahlia Nurses Home have since been relocated to the FSSON due to the bad conditions of their housing on the National District Hospital grounds.
“These students were transferred to FSSON due to the dilapidated condition of House Idahlia, which required drastic action to shut it down and hand it over for major renovations,” said Mvambi. He explained that the moving process has meant that cleaning out bins was not immediately attended to by staff.
“The situation at FSSON is that students clean their rooms and they empty their own dustbins. However, the big refuse bins in corridors are ordinarily attended to by the male cleaners. At the moment of your enquiry, these male cleaners could not empty the refuse bins because they were helping the same students to move from House Idhalia,” said Mvambi.
The school does not have a contracted service provider for the maintenance of the garden. According to the spokesperson, the male cleaners also tend to the garden at the home. “The Free State School of Nursing is in the plan of infrastructure upgrades at this unit for the current financial year,” added Mvambi.