DENOSA response to the Budget Speech by Finance Minister...

Media statement


Thursday, 26 February 2015


The Democratic Nursing Organisation of South Africa (DENOSA) notes the budget speech which Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene delivered in Parliament yesterday, especially the R178 billion health spending allocation for the next three years.  


We hope Health Minister Dr Aaron Motsoaledi will dwell more on how the R178 billion will be spent on health in his budget speech, and it is our expectation that nursing will get a fair share of the allocation, as Chief Nursing Officers’ directorates in many provinces have not been appointed.


Appointment of Chief Nursing Officers in provinces, who will work closely with the National Chief Nursing Officer, will give direction to many long-standing and pressing nursing challenges such as staff shortages, decaying infrastructure and dangerous working conditions that nurses have become exposed to.


We are pleased that Minister announced that the White Paper on NHI is imminent, to be accompanied by the discussion paper on financing options. The White Paper on NHI is long overdue and its release will surely shed light on many areas around NHI.


DENOSA regards it as good news that the Office of Health Standards Compliance has been listed as an independent entity with the budget allocation of R125 million, which we hope it will have the necessary tools of trade for its inspectors to do their inspection work thoroughly and to hold to account those facilities whose conditions are not ideal.


DENOSA had hoped that the Minister would have put in place a budget plan for the crisis caused by mass resignation of nurses, teachers and police offers due to false rumours around the retirement reform process, where most resigned on fears that the lump sum payment upon resignation will no longer be accessible after 1 March 2015. The resignations, which are still continuing in the public service, are causing strain in services at health facilities in the case of nurses (4 600 civil servants left the public service in November 2014 alone).


It was an expectation that the minister would announce a special budget to cater for these vacancies. But the fact that he made it known that his budget would be featured by, among others, consolidation of government personnel numbers makes us nervous that these public servants may not be replaced anytime soon, especially at this desperate time of increasingly ageing nursing population.


On the increase of 1% tax to most people who make up the bulk of tax payers which will further shrink workers’ disposable income, DENOSA finds it unfair to workers who have to make up for the irregular spending and general mismanagement that takes place in many government departments, resulting in short-fall of many projects and also for the lack of success in corruption-fighting mechanisms in government.


DENOSA still hopes that Health Minister will add the proverbial flesh to the bones that were laid out by Finance Minister.




Issued by the Democratic Nursing Organisation of South Africa (DENOSA)

For more information, contact:

Simon Hlungwani, DENOSA President

Mobile: 079 501 4922



Sibongiseni Delihlazo, DENOSA Communications Manager

Mobile: 079 875 2663

Tel: 012 343 2315





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DENOSA Gauteng responds to overcrowding at Mamelodi Hospital...

Media statement


Thursday, 26 February 2015


The Democratic Nursing Organisation of South Africa (DENOSA) in Gauteng would like to put it on record that overcrowding at Mamelodi Hospital is one of the reasons we marched to the Premier’s office to hand over the memorandum in November 2013.


We would also like to warn that the situation in other facilities is likely to get worse as resignation of nurses is causing more strain on few remaining nurses in facilities.


A concerned witness filmed the overcrowding at Mamelodi Hospital where pregnant women had to sit on benches due to unavailability of beds, where some were transferred from the surrounding clinics. The video was obtained by eNCA which broadcast it yesterday. Nurses in many facilities are forced by circumstances to care for patients under such conditions, and unfortunately community members often feel nurses are the ones to blame for such conditions, which is not the case.


Nurses make use of the tools that the facility has procured for its health professionals. In situations where there is overcrowding, nurses’ pledge bars them from turning patients away because there are no beds, hence patients often have their drips while on the floor if there are no beds available. 


DENOSA acknowledges that the Department of Health in the province has vowed to investigate the matter, but would like to stress that these challenges need no investigation more than hiring of enough health professionals and procurement of sufficient equipment that is in line with the ever growing population that each facility looks after.


DENOSA would like to remind the department that when it marched in November 2013 about the negative conditions that patients and health professionals are cared for and work under in facilities around Gauteng during our launch of a ‘Positive Practice Environments (PPE) campaign that there was never a response to memorandum. We are not going to say ‘we told you so’, because we still believe that health professionals can still work together with government in identifying and addressing the challenges together with community members.  


DENOSA would like to warn that conditions in many health facilities are likely to suffer even more, as thousands of nurses who resigned from as early as last year have not been replaced. Most nurses resigned because of misinformation and rumours around retirement reform where word of mouth made rounds claiming that public servants won’t receive their lump sum payment if they resign after 1 March 2015.


These rumours have caused havoc in many health facilities and DENOSA would like to know if any action is taken to replace the thousands that have since left the practice. This curiosity is in light of the announcement by Finance Minister in his Mid-Term Budget Policy Statement (MTBPS) in October last year to withdraw funding for positions which have been vacant for some time.


This will create a norm where overcrowding will be the order of the day in health facilities, and the biggest province such as Gauteng will feel the thick end of the stick in this case. DENOSA’s concern is that communities will continue to see laziness on the few nurses as the main reason for overcrowding.




Issued by the Democratic Nursing Organisation of South Africa (DENOSA) Gauteng


For more information, contact:

Simphiwe Gada, DENOSA Chairperson in Gauteng

Mobile: 079 501 4869

Tel: 011 440 4142/0125


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DENOSA Eastern Cape pleased with Premier’s State of the Province Address...

Media statement


Thursday, 26 February 2015


The Democratic Nursing Organisation of South Africa (DENOSA) in Eastern Cape is pleased with the State of the Province Address on health aspects as delivered by Premier of the province, Pumullo Masualle.


While he announced the number of health professionals that the province has produced, DENOSA would like to urge the province to make it its culture to absorb the professionals that it enrolls with its funding, as their service is greatly needed by communities, especially those in rural areas.


Many nurses who have qualified are sitting at home looking for work, which highlights a weakness in human resource planning for the province whereas the skills pool is readily available.


There was also a big mistake that the province committed a couple of years ago, where they stopped training all categories of nurses but focused only on producing professional nurses, which led to the great skills drought that forced the province to recruit lower category nurses from other provinces such as KZN.


DENOSA also applauds the provincial government’s commitment to infrastructural upgrade of the health facilities in various districts in the province, as well as the construction of new clinics which are at various stages of construction.


In the same breath, DENOSA would like to appeal to the provincial government to include both the upgrade as well as the construction of new nurses’ colleges and nurses’ residences where there is a great need.


DENOSA is also humbled by the premier’s undertaking to reduce unemployment in the province, especially among youth, which is becoming a serious problem in the province as it has lagged behind in creating job opportunities for its people compared to other provinces.




Issued by the Democratic Nursing Organisation of South Africa (DENOSA) in Eastern Cape

For more information, contact:


Koliswa Tota, DENOSA Provincial Secretary in Eastern Cape

Mobile: 082 776 0963

Tel: 041 484 7323


Sibongiseni Delihlazo, DENOSA Communications Manager

Mobile: 079 875 2663

Tel: 012 343 2315

Twitter: @DENOSAORG  

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From Ntandane Nyebe, a nurse in Cape Town. 

As the backbone of any healthcare system in the world, it is my honest opinion that nurses deserve proper compensation for the hard work they put in in improving the health of South Africans. After all, nurses are the proverbial Alpha and Omega. The following 10 points are the reasons.    

1. We are short staffed- one person does a work that should have been done by 4 people.

2. We have gone through formal education, we have got degrees etc, we are accountable to a nurses' board, we got to be paid decent salaries like Pharmacists and doctors- YES.

3. The health institutions do not have enough of the unskilled workers e.g. porters and cleaners- Nurses are then forced to work as unkilled workers-on top of their scope of practice, when the need arises.

4. There are many instances where doctors go & do shopping at the malls when they are on call, or simply some institutions have shortage of doctors- when an emergency situation arises- a nurse does a work that was supposed to be done by the doctor to save the client. Same case when there no social workers- nurses must run around doing what was supposed to be done by a social worker.

5. We do a risky job - I've heard of many nurses & docs who died from contagious diseases- especially trauma staff.

6. The governing party admitted in 2011 that there is a dire shortage of nurses in SA, which means nursing is a scarce skill in SA and the last time I checked professionals with scarce skills were getting paid higher salaries in SA.

7. We work under bad conditions- institutions with no proper security, lack of proper equipment etc. But we always try and do our best to improvise for the benefit of the clients.

8. Nurses who go & work overseas they don't go there just for fun or to experience different culture- they leave because they feel they are being overlooked by Government in terms of salary- meanwhile SA loses specialised nurses with experience - Government who cares about its people would try and keep nurses by raising salaries.

9. We deserve better. Our Government can afford to increase our salaries by 100%. There is money in SA- we have seen structural developments in SA & they have been built by companies who have been paid millions and billions.

10. ANC Government promised to increase salary of Nurses when they were in Mangaung in 2012/13. 

I Thank You


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About us

The Democratic Nursing Organisation of South Africa (DENOSA) in its current form was established on 5 December 1996.

The organisation was formed through political consensus after the transition to democracy and was mandated by its membership to represent them and unite the nursing profession. Prior to this, the South African Nursing Council (SANC) and the South African Nurses Association (SANA) were statutory bodies which all nurses had to join. It was also important after the transition to democracy to incorp... Read more