Sunday, September 28, 2008

Corruption

Corruption in Africa is widespread. So widespread in fact that most us aren't even suprised by it anymore. Occasionally, however, someone comes along and takes corruption to a whole new shocking level.

Just as common as corruption around these parts is the desire for a DG or disability grant. It is highly sought after. Scoring a disability grant is almost like scoring a jackpot to alot of patients around here. It's a strange phenomenon. Even better than getting a DG for a serious illness though, is getting one for no good reason at all.

What I am about to say is absolutely true.

A group of staff members at a community clinic were caught trying to abuse the social welfare system. In South Africa, the government grants DG's to HIV patients with CD4 counts less than 200. So what these people did was intercept the blood specimens of HIV positive patients who looked very ill and send the blood away for a CD4 count under their own names. In this way, they had a legitimate record of a very low CD4 count which qualified them for a DG.

Fortunately though, the actual application for a DG has to be filled in by a doctor (usually one who does nothing else but that) and when one of these people approached one, he was suspicious of a very healthy looking person supposedly having such a low CD4 count. In this way, this person and eventually all of them were caught out. They even received disciplinary action. Now that's something that's rare in Africa.

5 comments:

Karen Little said...

That is really, really appalling. That's the worst abuse of the system I've ever heard.

Hey, your baby's almost cooked! Exciting times :)

amanzimtoti said...

Karen at least they didn't get away with it.

I'm actually at the stage where I just want the baby to be born already. The last stretch is always the longest!

Dragonfly said...

Glad they got caught!! Hope your baby is treating you well.
Hope you don't mind...I mentioned your pregnancy in a blog about how many people are having babies at the moment.

Bongi said...

you must admit it is inventive.

after all africa is all about personal gain at the expense of the rest. it is the african way.

amanzimtoti said...

Dragonfly I don't mind at all :)

Bongi, sadly you're right, it is the african way.