After months of careful planning, patients were safely transferred with ER24’s assistance from the old location of Mediclinic Stellenbosch to the new premises at 1 Elsie du Toit Drive in Brandwacht, Stellenbosch.

The acute hospital was previously located in the popular suburb of Die Boord in Stellenbosch, but due to the growing demand for care from an ever-expanding Winelands community, the move allowing greater capacity was necessitated.

Saturday morning on the 1st of June after breakfast and a quick briefing, the big move started. Medics loaded the first patient into the ambulance at 09H00, and by 11H00 the last patient had left the hospital.

Twenty medics along with five ER24 Advanced Life Support ambulances and one ICU ambulance assisted on the day. Six second-year students studying a diploma in Emergency Medical Care with Mediclinic also took part in the move, gaining valuable experience. Dr Robyn Holgate, ER24’s Chief Medical Officer, also helped with the meeting, greeting and planning of the move as well as assisting on the day.

We used principles of Major Incident Medical Management and Support (MIMMS) to ensure safe and effective movement of the patients,” said Craig Wylie, ER24 Manager: Network Providers.

“Knowing the functions and capabilities that ER24 can provide and in particular that of the Emergency Response Team (ERT), has made the planning and coordination of the patient transfer considerably easier,” said Tristan Manning, Mediclinic Events Risk and Disaster Manager. “Another component is the dedicated individuals in the National Contact Centre who were tracking each patient transfer and keeping the patients’ families informed along the way.”

According to Craig, the most challenging part of the day was the dynamic admission and discharge of patients before the move. “We were able to greet and assess patients 48 hours before the move. However, new patients were constantly admitted, and some patients were discharged up until the last minute. This is expected in the acute hospital setting, but none the less a challenge. ER24 had an opportunity to showcase to the business what we do and how well we can do it. I would also like to thank everyone involved namely ER24 ERT, ER24 East Metro, the National Contact Centre, the Mediclinic Events Department and the ER24 Critical Care Retrieval Service.”

“Patients that are still admitted at the Die Boord premises include those in the orthopaedics unit, which will remain at this site, as well as patients within the mother and child units,” says Carol van Zyl, Hospital General Manager Mediclinic Stellenbosch. Mother and child refer to the neo-natal, paediatrics, obstetrics and gynaecology, which will relocate on 1 August 2019. At this point the Die Boord facility will begin operation on 1 August 2019 as Mediclinic Winelands Orthopaedic Hospital, specialising in orthopaedics and rheumatology in partnership with the Institute of Orthopaedics and Rheumatology.


Watch the video below for an overview of the day.