United Progressive Party (UPP) Senator Jonathan Joseph says the health sector needs reforming, since too many clinics are in a dilapidated state and the public hospital lacks the human and other resources required to run an effective operation.
The Senator’s assessment comes as Minister of Health Sir Molwyn Joseph is promising to address the long wait times in the Emergency Room at the Sir Lester Bird Medical Centre.
At the time, Sir Molwyn was addressing a weekend meeting with Antiguans and Barbudans in the Diaspora, at which concerns were also raised about nursing homes in the twin-island nation.
Senator Joseph says he has made it his business to check several clinics around the island, and he has seen, firsthand, the condition under which nurses have to work and patients have to be treated.
He says many of the clinics are not fit for human use, since they are also infested with vermin, which are carriers of disease.
No one should be subjected to working under these conditions, the Senator declares.
What is even more disgraceful, the UPP Senator says, is that some of the worst clinics are located in St. Mary’s North, for which Sir Molwyn is the parliamentary representative.
He says the Minister should be ashamed to have healthcare practitioners working in the current conditions.
According to Senator Joseph, every department under the Minister’s purview seems to be falling apart; and staff are unable to perform their respective duties efficiently owing to the lack of equipment.
As a result of their work conditions, nurses and other healthcare providers are demotivated, Joseph says, and he is calling on Sir Molwyn to address these issues urgently.