Graduation - 2023 - March (Open Access)


Recent Submissions

Now showing 1 - 5 of 35
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    "Making useful men and women of our children": Investigating the Medical Inspection of Schools in the Cape Province, 1918-1938
    (2023-03) Lemon, Kelsey; Sapire, Hilary; Fourie, Johan; Sapire, Hilary
    The history of school medical services is an underrepresented area in the South African historiography, either of education, childhood, or medicine. Little is known about the ideological or legislative origins of inspections, nor how these programmes operated, and what effect they had on social meanings of childhood and the state of child health. The thesis addresses this gap by examining the pioneering years of the Cape school medical service, (1918-1938). The Cape Province in the interwar, segregation era offers a unique case given its size and history of liberalism. In the twentieth century, the state claimed greater responsibility for the welfare of some of its citizens; ameliorating white poverty while entrenching systems to segregate those who were black, coloured, or Indian. Beginning in the nineteenth century and continuing through the twentieth, childhood was progressively regulated through state intervention, compulsory education, and child welfare work. Nevertheless, one’s class, gender, and especially race mediated the extent to which this idealised (western, middle-class) vision of childhood was a possibility for all children. The thesis applies traditional qualitative techniques and quantitative analysis to a range of sources, chief among them being the annual reports of the school medical inspectors. It is found that those promoting school medical inspections touted the service as a best means for alleviating white poverty and securing a healthy, productive white population. The thesis thus uncovers the political origins of school medical inspections and contributes to understanding how child health was leveraged in discussions of the “poor white problem”. When inspections began in 1918, inspectors were restricted to visiting school board schools which were predominantly (but not exclusively) white. In examining the operation of school medical inspections, it is found that, while the service’s value was widely perceived, financial insufficiency limited what the inspectors were ultimately able to achieve. A failure to provide medical treatment for indigent children also restricted the service’s impact. The thesis argues that demands for state involvement in the provision of free treatment offer a window on this early period in South Africa’s social welfare history and societal notions about the state's responsibility to its youngest citizens. By applying a mixed-methods approach to the annual school medical inspection reports, the thesis explores the impact of the Cape school medical service. To do this, the statistical returns of the inspection reports were transcribed which (recognising bias and subjectivity inherent in the data) constitutes a new dataset for examining historical child health outcomes in the Cape. The thesis finds, through their annual reports, the inspectors constructed an image of child health. This image comprised subjective meanings of healthiness and the contemporaneous state of child health. By measuring public and parental compliance with inspections, the thesis finds that school medical inspections contributed to the medicalisation of childhood, education, and parenting. Through their everyday interaction with children, lectures to teachers, meetings with parents and publication of official reports, the Cape school medical service altered societal perceptions of the ideal childhood.
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    An Exploration of Lower Limb Prosthetics Service Delivery in Namibia in Comparison to Global Standards
    (2023-03) Likando, Christopher; Visagie, Surona; Mji, Gubela
    Background: In 2017, the World Health Organisation published prosthetics and orthotics standards that are aimed at improving prosthetics and orthotics services internationally. The standards are meant to assist member states to improve prosthetics service delivery. The prosthetics standards document calls for the comparison of “the national prosthetics systems and services with the complete set of standards to derive a baseline against which to monitor further development” (WHO, 2017: xxi). Aim: The aim of this study was to explore the status of lower limb prosthetics service delivery in the public healthcare system of Namibia and compare it against the World Health Organisation`s global standards for prosthetics and orthotics. Methods: A sequential mixed methods design was adopted for this study where qualitative (descriptive) and quantitative (cross-sectional survey) data were collected and analysed sequentially. The study was carried out in Namibia's Khomas (urban) and Oshana (rural) regions. Insufficient records necessitated non-probability sampling in both settings and phases. Qualitative data were collected through semi-structured interviews with two service managers, nine service providers, and 16 prosthetics service users guided by interview schedules. Quantitative data were collected from two service managers, ten service providers, and 120 lower limb prosthetics service users. A survey was developed for managers and providers while users completed the TAPES-R. Content analysis was used for the qualitative data. The 60 standards provided deductive themes. Quantitative data was mainly analysed descriptively. Data from the two phases was triangulated and presented together. Findings: Findings showed that 12 of the 60 standards were implemented in Namibia. A further 28 were partially adhered to, while 20 were not implemented at all. Namibia had national policies that guide prosthetic service delivery, but the policies were outdated and not well adhered to. The study established that funding was available but insufficient. There was a wide range of prosthetics products available at no cost to users. Users’ needs were mostly met by available prosthetic products except for the ability to perform vigorous activities and participate in sports, which were limited for 90.8% (n=109) and 87.5% (n=105) of users respectively. Service users 82.6% (n=99) were satisfied with their prosthetic devices and the prostheses allowed them to be economically active 75.0% (n=90). Service providers were well-trained but did not regularly participate in continuous professional development. Training to qualify as a prosthetics service provider was not available in Namibia and in-service training opportunities were scarce. The number of service providers was insufficient. Lower limb prosthetics services were provided to all in need but often this involved long travel distances (mean 258.38 km; sd 265.611) as services at the primary level were not readily available. Users were not involved in policy development and implementation. Experienced users had the choice of products and providers, but first-time users did not. Users were provided with training, follow-up, and repairs. There was little collaboration with other team members during prosthetic rehabilitation. Conclusion: The study showed that more efforts are needed toward improving the delivery of lower limb prosthetics services in Namibia and upgrading them to levels that are in accordance with the World Health Organisation standards. It was concluded that a systems approach, based on the ten ‘Ps’ of systems thinking in assistive technology, could be adopted as a conceptual framework to identify interventions that can be most effective and efficient in efforts to meet the required standards.
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    A revision of evaporation and pan factors in use in South Africa
    (Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 2023-03) Taljaard, Carl Magnus Lönngren; Du Plessis, Jakobus Andries; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Engineering. Dept. of Civil Engineering.
    ENGLISH ABSTRACT: South Africa is an arid country where water is a valuable and scarce resource. The management of this resource, and the quantifying and mitigation of the losses from the large reservoirs are of paramount importance. Open water evaporation is responsible for large losses from reservoirs, and it is thus important to have a firm understanding of this phenomenon to effectively plan and manage water resources. The understanding of evaporation also plays a vital role in agriculture. This research aims to report on evaporation trends and revise certain aspects of evaporation in South Africa. The relationship between S-pan and A-pan evaporation, as well as the pan coefficients (used to estimate open water evaporation) currently in use in South Africa, is severely outdated and in need of updating, especially as evaporation changes over time. Various analyses were completed by utilising daily data sets pertaining to evaporation and large reservoirs. Data limitations constrained this research to a great extent, but valuable insights were gained. To gain a holistic understanding of evaporation in a South African context, this research had three main goals: • Performing trend analyses of S-pan evaporation over various time periods. • Updating the relationship between S-pan and A-pan evaporation. • Updating pan coefficients used to determine open water evaporation. The S-pan trends were determined for 30-year, 60-year and longer-term periods to compare the rates of change over various time periods. The data was compiled into daily, monthly, annual, individual monthly (daily and monthly) and seasonal (daily and monthly) data sets, and the trends for each of these formats were determined. Overall, declining trends dominated each of the analyses, but no consistent patterns or clear shifts could be detected. The relationship between S-pan and A-pan evaporation was found to be linear in each of the various tested formats. This part of the research was done in daily, monthly, annual and individual monthly contexts, determining new equations to estimate pan evaporation values for one type of evaporation pan from observed pan evaporation values of the other type of evaporation pan. Station-specific and general equations were generated and tested for accuracy, comparing the results to those of the existing equations. It was found that the existing annual equations are still applicable, but new monthly equations, which are applicable to any evaporation station, are proposed. The availability of good quality data limited the research on pan coefficients used to determine evaporation from the large reservoirs in South Africa to a great extent. The evaporation losses from five reservoirs in South Africa were determined for periods where the dams had no form of inflow, and new pan coefficients were calculated for this limited scope. On comparison, it was found that the current pan coefficients are still viable. This research indicates that an overall decline in evaporation rates was observed over time. It is recommended that the data availability and quality concerns highlighted in this research be addressed, and this research repeated – perhaps by using different means of determining evaporation – to gain a full understanding of evaporation in South Africa without the severe limitations experienced during this research.