— Dr Ramsammy
As the Ministry of Health awaits a report on the review of the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation’s policy regarding eating utensils, the Ministry is calling on members of the public for their cooperation in ensuring safety in the hospital.
Following a suicide on Monday, the hospital issued a statement that it will be reviewing its policy.
Cancer patient Antonio Smith inflicted at least four stab wounds to his neck and later succumbed. Following the incident, the question was raised as to how the patient had a knife in his possession.
According to the statement from the hospital, Smith got the knife from another patient’s bag. It was stated that the patient had used the knife earlier to peel an orange, and had replaced it in his bag before retiring to bed.
Speaking on the issue, Minister of Health Dr. Leslie Ramsammy said the incident was indeed unfortunate, and stressed that security at the institution has always been top priority. He noted that the hospital officials can only do so much, and their efforts are being compromised because members of the public are not being cooperative.
“When we make rules, members of the public complain about the restrictions, but we simply do this to ensure safety,” Dr Ramsammy emphasised.
“We cannot place a security guard at every bed in the hospital, so patients and their relatives have a major role to play as well,” Ramsammy added.
As it is, presently, a patient is thoroughly searched when being admitted to a ward in the hospital.
However, during routine visits to the ward, patients are often seen with knives which they use to peel fruits. In these instances the implements are smuggled into the hospital by relatives of these patients who obviously fail to consider the rules of the institution and more so, the possible consequences of their actions as they relate to safety.
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