Cape Town – Premier Alan Winde on Monday visited the oncology unit of the Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital, where he was given a tour of the establishment and interacted with some of the patients and their parents.
He also had a chance to hand out books received in the Western Cape government book drive which will be placed in the hospital’s library.
“The Red Cross Children’s Hospital does amazing work, not just for the children of the Western Cape, but for children from across Africa. I met with them today not only to see the work that they do, but to see how we as government can become more involved in assisting them to continue giving the world-class care that they do,” said Winde.
“You do feel a bit emotional when you see all these children and realise what both they and their parents have to deal with in fighting cancer, but coming to this health facility and seeing the different programmes that they offer in their attempts to restore hope in families is wonderful,” he said.
Ilze van der Merwe from Kids Kicking Cancer had fun relaxing the kids by doing some light karate moves with them.
“I come into Red Cross twice a week to do some light karate classes with the kids, even children as young as 1 can take part because it focuses more on breathing techniques and getting them to relax, which is especially good for those kids who are afraid of needles,” she said.
Professor Alan Davidson, head of the Red Cross Children’s Hospital Oncology and Haematology Unit said that the recently revamped space offers a lot more to both patients and staff members.
“The unit now includes additional isolation cubicles for vulnerable patients, an increased number of patient and family bathrooms, a clinical space allocated for research work, a dedicated room for the social worker, a renovated filing room and a bigger and more comfortable nurses tea room,” he said.