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CRH’s dialysis machines not being used privately, says Errol Green

Published:Monday | September 3, 2018 | 12:00 AMChristopher Thomas/Gleaner Writer
Cornwall Regional Hospital


Errol Greene, regional director of the Western Regional Health Authority (WRHA), has rubbished claims that the dialysis machines assigned to the Cornwall Regional Hospital (CRH) in Montego Bay are being used privately by some doctors to the detriment of the hospital's patients.

In April, 117 dialysis patients who formerly did their dialysis at CRH were relocated to private medical facilities in Montego Bay after the hospital's renal unit was evacuated due to air-quality issues that broke out at the hospital's main building in January 2017. The dialysis machines were moved to another building at the back of the Mt Salem-based hospital.

In an interview with The Gleaner last Wednesday, Greene dismissed reports that the dialysis machines had ever been removed from the hospital's compound.

"I can categorically state that this allegation is not true," said Greene. "In order not to disrupt the treatment of our dialysis patients, we made arrangements with three private providers of the service in Montego Bay. The treatment was outsourced for two weeks only. At no time during those two weeks did any dialysis machine leave the CRH property," he added.

"All the machines were relocated to their current area and are properly accounted for," continued Greene. "Furthermore, the dialysis machines in the unit are not portable and require expert technical support to dismantle and reassemble."

The WRHA boss also cast doubts on claims that some doctors have been accepting payment to place patients' names higher up on their waiting lists for treatment.

"I have no knowledge of this allegation. I have asked the regional technical director and CRH's chief executive officer and senior medical officer to investigate the allegation," said Greene. "I am also asking anyone has any information to this effect to contact me so that I can deal with it."

In June, CRH officials advised that while the 10-floor hospital is still operational, patients should expect longer waiting periods and reduced services due to the facility's ongoing restoration work.