Heroes of Groote Schuur have been highlighting all the people at the hospital who have played a vital role during the pandemic and now we turn to the heroes behind the scenes.
Cape Town, South Africa (31 July 2020) – Frontline workers are heroes, it is incredible what they do to protect society and the people within their care but this post isn’t about those heroes, this post is about the heroes we don’t see. The behind-the-scenes heroes do so much for those in hospital and we almost never see it.
That is, until today! The Heroes of Groote Schuur Facebook Page is dedicated to celebrating all those individuals who embody the hospital’s spirit of excellence. From the technicians to the doctors, nurses to night-watchmen, kitchen staff to porters — every single person plays an important role in helping the hospital fulfil its mission of providing quality healthcare for all.
This week, the page shone a spotlight on the hospital’s maintenance staff. The staff have been busier than ever, working to make the hospital safe and COVID-19 free. They asked hero Martin Ronne, Head of Plumbing and Acting Chief of Building about his experience during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We have been much much busier since COVID hit. It’s a lot more work. The guys are all under pressure. I even moved into the hostel next to the hospital so I could be available all the time, overnight etc. I would rather be here and keep my family at home safe, so I go home and see them on the weekends.
With COVID we have to speedily change the wards – first of all, we inspect and see what plumbing and building needs to be done such as painting, drywalling between beds to create shields, rails installed for curtains to create privacy.
Carpets have to be pulled out because the virus can live in the carpets so we install vinyl rather which is easier to clean.
Taps have to be changed from normal taps to elbow action for the virus.
All the air conditioning had to be reconstructed from inflow to outflow – so that was a big deal.
And then we still have to deal with our daily challenges such as blockages, pinholes in pipings, and theft of pipes is an ongoing issue.
We’re a team of three plumbers and three admins. We used to have 8 students helping us but they got sent home due to COVID.” – Martin Ronne, Head of Plumbing and Acting Chief of Building
Thanks, to heroes like Martin and his team, who work tirelessly without public praise; we see all that you do and we thank you!