The calls to have Gregson Joseph – an injured employee of the
Ministry of Works – flown out of the country for specialized
treatment for the burns he sustained during an explosion have fallen
on deaf ears.
While the Works Ministry, the Ministry of Health, and the Cabinet
have expressed concern about his situation and pledged to cover his
hospital expenses, no plans are being made to have him transferred
to an overseas burn unit.
For three consecutive weeks, the Cabinet says it inquired about the
patient and discussed the issue. This week, it reportedly was
advised that the care Joseph is receiving in Antigua is “as good as
any treatment to be received abroad, at this stage.”
Joseph sustained burns from explosive residue on June 26 while on
the worksite at the Burma Quarry. Since the accident, he has been
hospitalized at the Sir Lester Bird Medical Centre, reportedly in a
However, many residents are wondering why the Government has
refused to fly the burn victim overseas when he is a contributor to
the Medical Benefits Scheme (MBS).
One woman contends that, in the same way the prime minister was
willing to make LIAT available to transport victims from Guyana to a
burn unit in Barbados, this should be done for Joseph, as well.
Only a wicked administration would allow a citizen’s life to be
placed at risk and not do everything to offer him the best care, she
She notes that burns are a serious health emergency, since the
victim is easily susceptible to infections, and would be better cared
for in a hospital with a unit that caters specifically for such patients.