PHA CHAIRMAN RESPONDS TO OPPOSITION LEADER
The Public Hospitals Authority acknowledges the problem associated with the compressors for the air conditioning unit for the Critical Care Block, which failed as a result of the electrical power cuts and surges associated therewith. Three (3) of the four (4) units as of 1pm today have been restored, with the remaining unit scheduled to return online by the end of this week. Orders to have the remaining compressors replaced were executed with suppliers outside of the country as no local vendor was able to provide the essential item. The replacement compressors are now due to arrive in the Bahamas within the next few days and will be installed with secondary UPS to mitigate against any future power surges.
What becomes unconscionably clear in these developments though, is to see how the present leader of the Opposition, Dr. Hubert Minnis, in his attack on the Health Systems Strengthening Program at the Princess Margaret Hospital, has begun to use his office in a desperate attempt to gain cheap political mileage from these unfortunate circumstances.
Dr. Minnis should recall the state he left many vulnerable areas of healthcare under the Ingraham Administration. Under his watch he left the Maternity section of the hospital, a department in which he practiced for many years, in the worst state ever and under deplorable conditions which has been the hallmark of his legacy as Minister.
What Dr. Minnis has failed to show is that he is yet to accept the winds of change under the present Government. Dr. Minnis has aligned himself with those who seek not to have universal healthcare advanced for the ordinary Bahamian. He will once again be found on the wrong side of history.
Today major reforms under Health Systems Strengthening are underway at the Princess Margaret Hospital and its sister institution the Rand Memorial Hospital and Clinics in Grand Bahama where only today two (2) contracts were executed in our ongoing journey to make our health system better for the Bahamian people.
The interim renovations for PMH is part of the PHA and the Government’s Master Plan for the total phased in upgrade of this nation’s most iconic healthcare institution. The Government of the Bahamas and the PHA cannot and will not allow Bahamians who must use that facility to be exposed to such an unacceptable standard while we await the overall Master Plan to be completed. In this regard, we wish to assure the Bahamian people that the temporary relocation will only be done after extensive discussions with nurses, doctors and other care givers; and the Bahamian people can hold us to that pledge. It is against this backdrop that a series of meetings with primary care givers who work in the Maternity Department have been ongoing to address the relocation issues. In fact, many of the points included in the action plan for the temporary relocation of the Maternity Ward came directly from those care givers who work in the department and who clearly understand all of the implications associated with this most important initiative.
Already, the Authority has discovered that the interim relocation would further prove beneficial to the Maternity Ward and its patients as the department would be in closer proximity to the primary ambulance entry to the hospital. Patients requiring specialty services such as C-Sections would also be closer in proximity to the Critical Care Block and the Operating Theatres. So we would wish to reiterate for the benefit of the Bahamian people that we have heard their cry for the unacceptable conditions in Maternity Ward to be upgraded and we are now acting on what they request of us.