23 Aug 21 News Communities South Africa

New X-ray machine ends 110km patient transfers by ambulance

Assistant Nurse Christine Rowan has been able to help make prompt patient assessments with new X-ray unit funded by Noupoort Wind Farm

The medical care of a rural South African population has taken a significant advance with local access to X-ray diagnostics.

Noupoort Community Healthcare Centre, the primary 24/7 clinic for some 8,000 residents of the Northern Cape town and its surrounds, took delivery of a much-needed X-ray machine last month.

And staff were soon using the new equipment – funded by the nearby Noupoort Wind Farm, in collaboration with the district and provincial Department of Health offices, as well as the Provincial Department of Public Works – in emergency cases and for maternity and in-patient care.

The on-site service removes the need to make the 110km round-trip to Colesburg, where X-rays are only available two days a week and often leaves disadvantaged patients reliant on ambulance transfers.

Sister Jokka, the Operational Manager at the Noupoort Community Healthcare Centre, told how the X-ray machine was enabling medics like Assistant Nurse Christine Rowan to promptly assess injuries and illnesses, resulting in improved treatment plans.

She said “I would like to express our gratitude to the Noupoort Wind Farm for funding the project on behalf of the Noupoort community and the facility staff for the assistance of patient service delivery.”

The initiative was rolled out as part of the wind farm’s broader Economic Development programme of local health, social welfare and infrastructure supports.

"By donating the X-ray unit we are achieving three target areas which focus on improving the social economic conditions of the community."
Mainstream Economic Development Manager, Sandisiwe Mntonintshi  

Mainstream ED Manager Sandisiwe Mntonintshi explained: “By donating theX-ray unit we are achieving all three target areas, which focus on supporting and improving the social economic conditions of the community.”

Working with the District Department of Health, Noupoort Wind Farm has previously funded essential equipment in the fight against Covid, including defibrillators and Continuous Positive Air Pressure machines, which have been shown to help reduce lung damage in patients.

Personal Protection Equipment has also been supplied to keep local frontline healthcare workers at Eurekaville Clinic, Nonqo Simon Zono Clinic and the Noupoort Community Health Care Centre safe.

  • Noupoort Wind Farm was developed, constructed and is now operated by Mainstream for our Africa joint venture, Lekela Power. The 80 MW plant began generating around 304,800MWh of clean energy a year for the Eskom grid in July 2016, enough to power up to 69,000 South African homes.