Thu | Jan 18, 2018

Disgraceful medical treatment from CRH

Published:Saturday | October 22, 2016 | 12:00 AM
The Cornwall Regional Hospital in Montego Bay, St James.
Dr Christopher Tufton, Jamaica's health minister.

A few days ago, I visited Cornwall Regional Hospital's (CRH) Accident and Emergency Department, taking an uncle of mine for emergency treatment and had to wait for six hours before finally receiving medical intervention for him from doctors at the Type One medical facility and after seeing two doctors.

The wait was long and painstaking, and the emergency waiting room was half-filled and nurses and doctors from personal observation were working at a slow pace, exhibiting very little concern for patients. The nurses and two doctors who attended to my uncle were rude, uncaring and obnoxious and operated as if patients were not human and had no human feelings.

The Accident and Emergency Department of the CRH is poorly organised and inefficient in many respects. Persons waiting for emergency medical treatment were at times very annoyed at the hours and hours in waiting time that they were enduring for treatment and at times were heard shouting for help. This is a disgraceful indictment on the management of the hospital. The restroom located at the casualty department was filthy and smelly, causing one's stomach to get upset on entering the restroom area. Another disgrace.

After my uncle was treated by doctors, he received a prescription. We went to the hospital's pharmacy, where we waited another two hours before reaching the dispensary prescription window, only to be callously told in a harsh tone that the three prescription items had been out of stock for the past six weeks, according to the pharmacist.

I am calling upon the minister of health, Dr Christopher Tufton, to immediately conduct a thorough investigation into the operations at the CRH and, thereafter, take the relevant steps to rectify the disorganisation and lengthy waiting time that persons have to endure at the hospital's Accident and Emergency Department, the deplorable and disrespectful conduct of nurses and doctors who serve there, and the shortage of drugs at the hospital's pharmacy.

I am told by other persons who use the pharmacy that on most occasions prescription drugs are out of stock. What are we paying taxes for? To be humiliated by doctors and be waiting for some six hours before being treated at the CRH's Accident and Emergency Department.

My uncle and I were truly disappointed and shocked at the poor treatment which we received at the CRH. The hospital needs a total managerial change, with an effective CEO be appointed and a new senior medical officer as well. Things cannot continue in this disgraceful way and regularly I hear persons bitterly complaining about the long waiting hours at the casualty and clinic departments at the hospital.

Minister Tufton, I implore you to address the many problems affecting the CRH and take action forthwith. Doctors are supposed to be caring, polite and professional persons.

We taxpayers are entitled to first-class medical treatment at every publicly operated and funded hospital.