We’re being rejected though we want to serve – Miss SA runner-up

The 2021 Miss South Africa runner-up and medical doctor, Moratwe Masima, is one of many graduates who are struggling to find employment.

The supermodel said qualified doctors are being pushed away even though they want to serve the nation.

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A post shared by Dr. Moratwe Masima (@dr_moratwemasima)

Masima, who worked at the Charlotte Maxeke Johannesburg Academic Hospital as an emergency doctor, said she is one of more than 800 medical doctors who are unemployed.

Toying with idea of relocating

“I join the +800 medical doctors unemployed after six years of medical school, two years of internship, and one year of community service,” she said.

“Like many, I have invested in courses worth thousands of rands in the hope of securing permanent employment in our public hospitals to serve 84% of our population.”

She said only 16% of the country’s population has the luxury to see a general practitioner or go to a private hospital.

“Like many [doctors], I have had to consider private practice, which costs a huge amount of capital to set up, and going abroad as the government states they don’t have the budget to absorb us.

“It’s sad because we dedicated our lives to our careers. It’s sad because we are being pushed away even though we want to serve.”

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A post shared by Dr. Moratwe Masima (@dr_moratwemasima)

Meanwhile, during the State of the Nation Address debate last week, Dr Joe Phaahla, the Health Minister, said his department has a solution to address the challenge of doctors who want to stay in the public service but cannot be offered funded posts.

Budget Speech to provide answers

“The details of how we are going to fund the posts will come out of [finance] minister [Enoch] Godongwana’s Budget Speech on Wednesday,” Phaahla said.

Dr Cedric Sihlangu, the general secretary for the South African Medical Association Trade Union, said it was a disheartening reality that year after year, the same pivotal issues surface without meaningful intervention or progress.

“The minister’s acknowledgment of these challenges, without presenting an actionable framework to address them, exemplifies a poor showing from the department,” said Sihlangu.

“It raises severe concerns about the department’s commitment to our healthcare practitioners and, by extension, to the health of our nation.”

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