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A plea was issued today for Barbadians to spend their dollars at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital instead of running overseas for treatments that can be had here, especially for children.

President of the A Gift For The Children Foundation, Shelly Ross, was at pains to point out this morning that the more people contributed to the upgrade of facilities in the Perinatal Intensive Care Unit of the hospital, the fewer children would be flown overseas for treatment.

In fact, Ross maintained that when Barbadians were asked to donate to overseas treatments, they needed to investigate further whether it was treatment that could be done here.

“One of the major areas of concern is that I’m tending to see a lot of people appealing to send sick children out of Barbados for assistance. When you take $250,000 and you give it to a Miami hospital or a European hospital, or another hospital to aid one sick child, when that assistance can be done in Barbados, when that treatment can be done in Barbados, that $250,000 given away can serve not just one child, it can serve a number of children from Barbados and around the region that come here for treatment.

“I think, and I am appealing to the public that when they get these requests for helping sick children, I think we should first contact the relevant persons at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital to see if these requests are bona fide, because that money should never leave Barbados when we need the money here.

“Why give our $250,000 to Miami? US hospitals don’t give our hospitals money to help one sick children. Why are we giving away our money when we need it? Whatever disease one sick child has, rest assured there are going to be others with that same sickness a few years later, or someone from the region that can come here for that help,” argued Ross.

She was speaking as her organisation made a donation to the PICU today, the second such donation to the hospital.

Although the charity has been in existence for only a year, Ross its members recognised the need to assist the PICU with training, equipment and other areas that could perhaps upgrade the services offered by the unit to children. This could, if others joined in, bring a halt to any need to seek outside medical help, particularly for children.

“I think equipping the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, equipping them to care for every child and not just one child is what we aim to do, and I am appealing to the public of Barbados to think about putting their monies where it can help hundreds of children instead of just one child.

“Of course we would like every child in Barbados to be cared for in the best possible manner. We want to see them grow into wonderful young men, healthy young men and women, but we don’t just want it for one child, we want it for every child. So instead of taking $250,000 or $50,000 and supporting a hospital out of our region, let us put it to our hospital, buy the necessary equipment, help with the necessary training, so that our children, regardless [can get assistance].

“I might be able to raise that $250,000 for my child, but tomorrow there might be another child that needs assistance and there is none for that child. If that money is taken and put in the PIC Unit, there would be assistance for many children,” the president maintained.

“That is what we are really concerned about. We are doing our part, and I am calling on the wider Barbados to do their part to make this really possible. We complain about the QEH, but rest assured there are people in the US who complain about their hospitals that they are sending people to as well. We don’t know that, but what we can clean up in our own backyard, let us do that first,” Ross pleaded. (LB) 

3 Responses to LIFELINE

  1. Ms. Bemused October 4, 2013 at 8:44 am

    Ms. Ross, it’s not taking money and giving it to an overseas hospital, it’s finding the best treatment for your child or loved one. Until you walk in any parents footsteps that has been through this incredibly difficult situation you will never be able to understand, even if you work with it. Very insensitive statements. People make donations to the Q.E.H all the time, but when the equipment is not being used what is the public to do. What do you think the taxes being taken out of Bajans salaries every payday represent? Then you go into the hospital and you can’t even wash a cup to feedyour loved ones at the pipe. The tv’s donated for the patients are being used for the staff etc. So lady, until the resources that are appropriated for patient care and comfort be used accordingly, and patients be treatedlike humans and not animals at the Q.E.H statements like yours should be directed to management of the hospital and not feedup Bajans.

  2. Shelly Ross October 5, 2013 at 2:34 am

    Bemused, you are not in any position to say what I have experienced or what I have not experienced and neither are you in any position to prove half of what you have said and sadly you have not quoted any of the comments from the numerous appreciative patients that have received excellent care at the QEH.
    I understand the anxiety that parents and any one feel when children and loved ones are seriously ill and the desire to get the ‘best’ treatment for your loved one is definitely what we all want.
    That being said, I refuse to fall into the thinking that overseas hospitals are better than ours or that doctors practising in the USA or any where in the world are better than our doctors. I refuse to join the company that would decry our hospital and rush to support an overseas hospital because we ‘want the best’.
    What is the best? Where is the best? All hospitals throughout the world have their share of problems and I do believe that the majority of them do their best with the resources they have, but problems do arise.
    Fortunately for many of the hospitals in the big countries, they receive large grants from wealthy individuals and they have more resources than we do, but that does not mean that they have better doctors.
    We have many good doctors and nurses and our governments over the years have tried to provide the best health care for all Barbadians.
    Like everyone else, we have problems, some financial, some caused by workers, but to ensure that we continue to provide excellent health care for all, we need to band together and put our monies into making our product the best.
    I have absolutely no problem with anyone choosing their doctor or hospital at which they prefer to get health care if they can afford it, but I am very concerned when false information is fed to the public to ask for assistance for one person when the money raised can go towards helping so many more if we invest it in our own product.
    While that might be looked at as anxiety, it is fraudulent behaviour and it is also selfish.
    The folly of such can also be seen when the patient returns home and problems develop again and the patient cannot be rushed back to the overseas facility and they end up at the QEH. Is it good then?
    That alone indicates the intelligence behind supporting the product we have here, just as wealthy Americans do with their money for their products.
    I trust that Barbadians realise that while money may be freed up today for one patient, another patient may not be so lucky tomorrow. The common sense thing to do is to work with what we have to make it the best possible facility. We have some of the best doctors in the world at the QEH and numerous patients from all walks of life and from all over the world are treated at the QEH where there is an excellent record of health care.
    Scandals and holding on to ignorant statements is narrow minded behaviour to support selfishness and it is time that Barbadians wake up to the fact that they can likely be there tomorrow.
    I would again call on all Barbadians to play their part in making the QEH the best health care facility in the world for our children, the elderly and for ourselves.

  3. Shelly Ross October 5, 2013 at 9:14 pm

    All over the world, all hospitals experience challenges.

    I have no problem with anyone choosing their doctor or hospital if they can afford it, but I am concerned when false information is fed to the public to ask for assistance for one person when such money can be used to help several others.

    The folly of such can also be seen when the patient returns home and problems develop again and the patient cannot be rushed back to the overseas facility and they end up at the QEH.

    That alone indicates the intelligence behind supporting the product we have here.

    For every one very sick child who receives help from the public, there are several others just as sick, being cared for at the QEH.

    Improving the equipment or helping to provide equipment and training to help take care of all sick children is making the wish of all parents with very sick children, to get the best for their child, a reality.


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