May 28, 2015 News
The West Demerara Regional Hospital (WDRH) serves as the referral hospital in Region Three, offering medical service to thousands of people residing on the West Coast, West Bank, as well as the Essequibo Islands
including Leguan and Wakenaam.
However, while the hospital offers similar services to the country’s main referral hospital, the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC), there is need for some additional services, and according to newly appointed Minister of Public Health, Dr. George Norton, the new A Partnership for National Unity + Alliance for Change (APNU+AFC) Government will ensure key services such as a 24-hour theater are put in place shortly.
”The West Dem Hospital should be of a quality not too different from the Georgetown Hospital, however no doubt more resources need to be available to this hospital,” Minister Norton said during a visit to the West Demerara Regional Hospital today.
The staff of the hospital was applauded for their hard work and dedication, and especially for the hygiene of the entire facility. The Minister noted that, “the staff knows exactly what they want, understand their limitations, conscious of their challenges and give the impressions that they want to overcome those challenges.”
Minister Norton also interacted with the staff and a number of concerns were raised, including the shortage of drugs and the unavailability of key equipment which force them to refer patients to the GPHC. The Minister said, “Like so many other areas that affect the health sector in general, like the on and off availability of drugs, medical equipment or materials. It is plaguing this hospital. It’s happening all around. I get that while the authorities (the staff) are conscious of this, they are always willing to do the necessary things to correct the situation.”
Minister Norton also interacted with the staff and a number of concerns were raised, including the shortage of drugs and the unavailability of key equipment which force them to refer patients to the GPHC. The Minister said, “Like so many other areas that affect the health sector in general, like the on and off availability of drugs, medical equipment or materials, it is plaguing this hospital, the issue of catheters, or proper sutures and some essential medications. It’s happening all around. I get that while the authorities (the staff) are conscious of this, they are always willing to do the necessary things to correct the situation.”
Another issue raised was the fact that nurses who were trained four years ago have not been appointed by the Region, and as a result are not remunerated in the correct scale. Minister Norton stressed that this issue immediately needs to be corrected because frustration can prevent the nurses from performing at their maximum.
Meanwhile, a visit was also made to the Versailles Health Centre. This facility was constructed in 2010 on a wide expanse of government’s land, and according to Minister, yet it’s cramped for space. This causes the staff some discomfort. This issue will be rectified shortly, he said.
He said that with proper accountability and maximum utility, health services provided to the citizens of Region Three can be greatly improved.
The Minister was accompanied by the Regional Health Officer, Vasha Bachan, Regional Chairman Julius Faerber and Regional Executive Officer (REO) Azam Mohamed and other regional officials.
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