QEH situation is regrettable, says Dr Ferdinand
A former senior health official has lamented the crisis state at the state-run Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH).
However, Dr Elizabeth Ferdinand, who recently retired from the position of Senior Medical Officer in the Ministry of Health, said it came down to a question of resources and setting priority areas.
Her comments come against the backdrop of last week’s notice from the Barbados Association of Medical Practitioners (BAMP) and the Junior Doctors Association that the situation at the hospital had reached such a stage that they had decided to handle emergency cases only.
Since then, hospital authorities have strongly condemned the move by the doctors.
After injecting $22 million into its operations earlier this year, Minister of Health John Boyce also announced at the weekend that Government was preparing to bring a further $25 million supplementary to Parliament before the end of the current financial year to assist the cash-strapped QEH.
“I am very sad that this has happened. We know what the economic position is at the present moment so we have to try and manage as best we can with what we have. You have one cake, you can only divide it up and priorities have to take precedence,” said the retired health official in a brief interview with Barbados TODAY this morning, in which she however could not hide her joy over being awarded a Silver Crown of Merit in this year’s Independence honours list announced at the weekend.
Having spent over 40 years in the health care system, both as a practitioner and policymaker, the Guyanese-born, who spent most of her years in Barbados, declared that she would have had it no other way and indicated that she was grateful for the opportunity to serve.
“I enjoyed my work. I loved my work. I was happy working with my colleagues and, of course, doing something that would benefit all of Barbados and not just the children but also the older people. And, I will continue to do the best in whatever I continue to do now that I have retired. I won’t be active at work, but I am doing other things for all of us,” Dr Ferdinand said.