Survey finds hospitals have long waiting times, shortage of drugs – Dr Anthony
Minister of Culture, Youth and Sport, Dr. Frank Anthony, recently revealed several concerns raised from a Ministry of Health (MoH) client survey. Some of the findings are the long waiting time at healthcare facilities and non-availability of drugs at the hospital pharmacies.
He was delivering the feature address at the Berbice Regional Health Authority (BRHA) 10TH Award Ceremony.
A recent survey provided information that people are waiting too long at the Public Hospital accident and emergency sections and at clinics. “One of the things that was set as a benchmark is, how do we reduce waiting time for people”.
Dr. Anthony said that he is sure that Berbicians are also complaining about this humbug. He wants this waiting time to be reduced.
“Whether you come for a routine clinic, perhaps we have to see how we can reduce that waiting time…We have some scheduled surgeries and sometimes people complain that they wait too long to get surgery. So there is always room for improvement”.
He stated that this is an ongoing exercise, to change the system. “And I am sure that waiting time is one of the principal things that you can be looking at”.
Another matter he spoke about was the duration people spend in the hospital. “There is a cost for keeping people in a bed, and therefore if we can give them the right medication and they heal faster, then they will go home faster and be with their loved ones. That is something that we also can look at”.
The same client survey showed that people are complaining that they are not getting the right drugs from the hospital pharmacies.
“We have been buying a lot of drugs and it is in the central bonds and it is distributed to the regional bonds. Therefore, we should know when we are running short to ensure that the supplies are in place.”
He said that efficiencies have to be improved across the board, “and this is something we must constantly work on, so while we celebrate successes, we must also have some time for introspection and to see how we can improve our system because ultimately, we are judged by the interaction that we have with the people who come to us for service and if they leave anyone of our facilities dissatisfied, then we are not doing our jobs properly.”
Dr. Anthony stated that the management and the Ministry of Health, can have the best of plans “but if those plans are not properly implemented then we still would not be doing our jobs.”
He said that it is good to mention that targets are being reached and surpassed, but he questioned if that is really serving the people well.
“We have to work to fulfill those expectations and we must work hard to do that”.