Health care promise

While acknowledging that the Queen Elizabeth Hospital

was experiencing some challenges in procuring medication

from pharmaceutical companies, Barbadians were given

the assurance that officials of the Ministry of Health would

continue to work with suppliers to ensure proper health

care was delivered.

Minister of Health John Boyce gave Barbadians this

assurance today at a Press conference at the QEH

where he and senior personnel in the Ministry of Health

addressed the issue of a shortage of drugs brought about

by insufficient funds.

“Finance has occupied the minds of policymakers in the

Ministry of Health, and more recently it has attracted the

attention of the media. I think specifically of a story carried

in the print media which dealt with the situation at the QEH.

We are not here to deny any of the facts that exist, but

certainly what I want to do is to assure Barbadians that we

continue to work with our suppliers.

“We work with our specialists at the QEH; we work with

our consultancy team; and we work with our management

team at the hospital to ensure that those patients who

require treatment, even when there may be shortages,

[have] access to medication . . . .

“I am continued to be assured by the Drug Service that

it is a clearly written rule [on supply of medication in critical

cases] in respect to the management of the QEH. These are

tough economic times and I do not think that anybody wants

to give a different picture. There is no point pretending that

we can continue doing business as usual.

“We have to put our fingers on areas of wastage; we have

to put our fingers on areas of efficiencies, where we can

improve efficiencies; and we have to put our fingers on a

term we adopted of engagement.

“Engagement is where we are talking about our workers,

our staff, our management team really being involved in

our overall objective we are trying to achieve for our of

Barbados,” Boyce added.

The minister told members of the Press that this was the

message that the administration was sending to Barbadians

that it would ensure that they have access to health care.

“I want Barbados to be comfortable that that is our

job, as the Minister of Health; it is our job, as the QEH;

and we are not reneging from that challenge or challenges,”

Boyce said. (NC)

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