After being admitted to a city hospital for just over one week, Chief Education Officer (CEO), Olato Sam, was
evacuated over the weekend for urgent medical treatment.
A senior Ministry of Education official yesterday confirmed this development. He said that Sam has left for Barbados en route to the United States for further evaluation and treatment.
Sam, two Saturdays ago, complained of a severe headache and was rushed to a city hospital for medical attention.
Reports reaching this publication suggest that Sam’s condition was as a result of a leak in an artery in his head resulting from an untreated aneurysm.
An aneurysm is a bulge in the wall of an artery, usually the aorta (the main artery of the body). The bulge usually occurs in a weak area of the artery wall and the pressure of blood inside the artery has the potential to force the weak area to balloon outward.
If untreated, an aneurysm may rupture, resulting in internal bleeding. Consequences are usually dependent on the size of the rupture. A large rupture may be rapidly fatal and a small one sometimes termed a ‘leak’ may produce warning symptoms that allow people to seek medical care.
But according to a colleague who worked close to Sam ahead of his hospitalisation, there was nothing to suggest that something was physically wrong with the CEO. “He was with me on Friday (the day before his hospitalisation) and he was fine,” recalled the official who has since been informed that the CEO’s condition could have been the result of high blood pressure.
Ahead of being hospitalised Sam was engaged in official work detail at the Cliff Anderson Sports Hall where the two-day finals of the Sagicor Visionaries Challenge was being convened. Sam was present both days of the event and was even required to make brief remarks.
The Chief Education Officer who is currently in his mid 40s was appointed to the position of CEO in December 2010, a position which Ms Genevieve Whyte-Nedd formerly acted in.
The announcement of Sam’s appointment was made by former Minister of Education, Shaik Baksh, under whom Sam had functioned for three years as Technical Advisor.
Sam, a Queen’s College old boy, is the holder of a Master’s Degree in International Education with a focus on Latin America and the Caribbean.
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