THERE is a distressing issue in St Lucia that has been frequently discussed, but very little effort seems to be made to resolve this problem. Ms. Editor, health care in St Lucia is simply a disaster. In 2009, the St Jude Hospital burned down and to this day the hospital remains in the stadium. Not only has the hospital not been rebuilt but to date medical attention continues to be a sore point. St Lucia’s health care is on a downward spiral and this is of great concern to everyone Ms Editor and this makes me mad.
Firstly, sick persons at home have to pay; that’s right PAY; for the journey from their homes to the hospital when using the ambulance. This is absolutely ridiculous! The patient is already sick and may not have money to pay for medicine, but a simple ride to the hospital must be paid in full before the journey is made? A better way of scamming sick people cannot be imagined. Why must this be? Must hospital personnel kick a man when he is already down?
Next, the staff at the St Jude hospital ignores suffering patients in the waiting room. I have been a witness to that kind of treatment. A man, who was suffering from excruciating pain, voiced his discomfort to one of the nurses who instructed him to drink water, sit and wait. That is absolutely infuriating Ms Editor, these people may die without immediate medical attention, but all these “nurses” can tell them to do is to sit and wait. Do you see why this makes me mad?
Lastly, most medical institutions in St Lucia lack the necessary equipment for treatment of patients. Since there is no equipment, guess what we citizens have to do? That’s right we have to travel to other countries just to get proper medical attention. Add the cost to travel, the medical fees, food and housing and you get “exorbitant spending”. Now guess what? The total fees to travel to another country to get treatment is sometimes lower than what people may pay for medical assistance here in St Lucia and this Ms Editor is after hospitals already lack proper medical equipment! Unbelievable! Right?
In conclusion, the authorities need to fix our health system so that citizens will not suffer. Our lives depend on it.
A very concerned student.