The donated equipment included a portable colour ultrasound system and 24 vital signs patient monitors.
Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi on Tuesday received high-end medical equipment, mainly imaging apparatus, donated to the Steve Biko Academic Hospital in Pretoria by the Chinese government.
“I wish to convey my sincere appreciation for this donation, on behalf of the government and people of South Africa. This type of medical equipment will always be needed by the these hospitals like the Steve Biko Academic Hospital, and you can never have enough of it,” Motsoaledi said as he addressed the handover ceremony inside the hospital.
“This equipment will firstly augment what the hospital already has, and will also replace old equipment that is reaching the end of its lifespan. This equipment that has been donated today was already on the procurement plan of this hospital.”
The minister said the Steve Biko Academic Hospital was planning to purchase the equipment because most of its utilities at the hospital has reached the end of their lifespan.
“This is a huge relief because that money will now be used elsewhere. The equipment you see here is just samples.”
The donated equipment included a portable colour ultrasound system, 24 vital signs patient monitors, SynoVent E5 Adult/Neonate ventilators and A7 high-end anaesthesia workstation.
Motsoaledi told the Chinese delegation that “ordinarily in South Africa, the elite don’t attend public hospitals”.
“They believe it’s a scandal to go to a public hospital. But I, as the minister, this is the hospital where I get my treatment. A number of ministers also get their treatment in this hospital. But whenever I come here, the South African media believes it is propaganda. I come here because this is the best hospital,” said Motsoaledi.
The minister said private hospitals also referred numerous patients to the Steve Biko Academic Hospital because they did not have the equipment to carry out complex procedures.
The medical equipment was officially handed over to the South African authorities by Liu Yandong, Vice Premier of the State Council of The People’s Republic ofChina. She was accompanied by several Chinese officials including Minister of Health and Family Planning Commission of China, Li Bin.