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Health Minister to speak on health sector conditions today

Published:Tuesday | May 5, 2015 | 5:51 AM
Dr Fenton Ferguson

Health Minister, Dr Fenton Ferguson is expected to address in the House of Representatives this afternoon, what the Opposition calls the disgraceful state of the local health sector.

Ferguson is to make his contribution to the Sectoral Debate which is expected to start about two o’clock.

Opposition spokespersons, Desmond McKenzie and Derrick Smith are also expected to make their contributions to the debate. 

Last Friday, the Jamaica Medical Doctors’ Association (JMDA) spoke of unsanitary conditions under which health services are being delivered.

At a press conference, JMDA president Dr Alfred Dawes alleged that operating theatres are filled with fungus and that doctors are being given plastic bags instead of surgical aprons to use during operations.

He produced pictures to show that the absence of standard medical masks has left the doctors with no option but to use those issued as part of the Ebola response.

 

JMDA president Dr Alfred Dawes

The JMDA has also withdrawn from a health ministry taskforce and has called for strong measures against Permanent Secretary Dr Kevin Harvey.

Opposition Spokesperson on Health and Healthy Lifestyle, Senator Malahoo Forte has declared the government’s management of the sector as a national disgrace.

She says the Simpson Miller Administration needs to prioritise the necessary funds to deal with the shortages in the island’s hospitals and health centres.