Honouring pledge

From left: Director of Nursing at the QEH, Bernadette Harris, Director of Administration AUB, Dr. Gary Brar and AUB administrator, Dr. Farzana Mahdi in discussion as Director of Clinicals AUB, Dr. Raghu Bajwa and Lisa Neblett look on.
From left: Director of Nursing at the QEH, Bernadette Harris, Director of Administration AUB, Dr. Gary Brar and AUB administrator, Dr. Farzana Mahdi in discussion as Director of Clinicals AUB, Dr. Raghu Bajwa and Lisa Neblett look on.

One year ago the American University of Barbados School of Medicine pledged its commitment to work closely with the Barbadian community. This morning the commitment was honoured when it presented two stainless steel beds to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital.

Director of Admissions for the AUB, Dr. Gary Brar, explained that the gesture was one of many to come. He said they chose to first “share” the beds because of a personal experience. One of their workers, Brar said, was injured and broke his legs at that time “he could not be treated or operated [on] because there wasn’t a bed”.

Adding that it was then they realised they needed to give the beds to the hospital and in doing so vowed to continue giving and working together with that institution.

“We [want to] see how we can help the community that embraced us so closely… Barbados has become for all the directors of the [American] University of Barbados and for the offshore students coming here from America and Canada and other places across the world, home.

“Our thanks to the Government of Barbados, to the people of Barbados and on our first gesture we would like to share what we have, the knowledge we have, the facilities we have, all the equipment which we brought in. We at AUB would like to do anything and everything possible in our capacity to work closely … together,” he said.

AUB is the first offshore medical school established in Barbados. It opened last February. In the year, Brar said, the students had been working closely with the community, getting involved with organisations like the Barbados Diabetes Association as well as the Barbados Cancer Society in an effort “to help build community”.

Speaking with Barbados TODAY, one of the administrators visiting from India, Dr. Farzana Mahdi, reiterated that today’s gift was just the beginning and they would assist anyway they could as the need arises. The beds, she said, were manufactured by a sister company in India, which also produced bed side lockers, trolleys, stools and other hospital equipment used at their charitable clinics in India.

Director of Nursing, Bernadette Harris, said the hospital was very thankful for the gifts since presently they had 600 beds and see an average of 490 patients daily. She said it was always good to have an excess number of beds. (KC)

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