Mitchells Plain Transitional Care Facility alleviating service pressure on hospital

MEC Nomafrench Mbombo visited the facility. Photo: WCG

MEC Nomafrench Mbombo visited the facility. Photo: WCG

Published Apr 3, 2024


A new Mitchells Plain Transitional Care Facility in Cape Town is alleviating the pressure on the acute hospital platform.

The facility, which has 148 beds provides intermediate care to patients who are medically stable but are unable to be discharged but do not require acute care and would be able to fully recuperate without congesting the hospital platform.

The Western Cape Department of Health and Wellness said it has always offered intermediate care through non-profit organisations (NPO) and the implementation of its Transitional Care Policy in 2022, has outlined the concepts, principles, and considerations for implementing transitional care in the Western Cape.

This has evolved from our previous policy position of intermediate care released in 2012 and also accounts for the lessons learnt during the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Currently, in terms of transitional care capacity, the Western Cape has 539 beds in the metro and 353 in the rural health districts. These services fall under the Sub-acute, Step Down and Chronic Medical Hospitals sub-programme in our budget, which has been allocated R469.875 million for the 2024/25 financial year,” the department said.

“At the Mitchells Plain Transitional Care Facility, the Department contracts the NPO, Aquarius, to offer the following services: short-stay intense rehabilitation, wound care, end-of-life care, post-acute care, and palliative care for admitted clients and guidance of families as part of the health promotion and supportive education provided by the facility.”

Fatima Peters, chief executive officer (CEO) of the Western Cape Rehabilitation Centre who also oversees the metro’s transitional care services said following the pandemic, the implementation of the Western Cape Transitional Care Policy, the department is making use of transitional care to alleviate the pressures being placed on its acute hospital platform.

She said facilities such as the Mitchells Plain Transitional Care Facility were playing a crucial role in bringing together multidisciplinary teams, including rehabilitation and community care workers, to provide these essential packages of care.

“As our country navigates a constrained budgetary period, we must look at ways to ensure that the whole healthcare system is strengthened to manage both the present and future demands,” Health and Wellness MEC Nomafrench Mbombo said.

“This is why transitional care is, and will continue to be, a strategic focus for the department going forward. With our acute hospital services operating under immense pressure, transitional care facilities such as these are playing an important role in our service redesign process where we are aiming to optimise the efficiency, equity, and quality of care across the province.”

A total of 140 patients have already been admitted at the facility.