Minister of Health and Wellness, the Hon. Dr. Michael Darville made his contribution the the mid-year budget debate in the House of Assembly where he spoke on some of the challenges faced by his ministry.

Darville revealed that increased demand for hospital care is straining resources saying, “many of these unstable patients require hospitalization because of non compliance with medication, diet, sometimes lack of primary health care follow up in many cases resulting in readmission just weeks after being discharged. This was becoming a vicious cycle because these chronic patients continue to occupy precious hospital beds making it extremely difficult to admit surgical, medical, obstetric and gynecological patients who in must cases have been on waiting lists for years to have life saving non urgent surgical procedures completed.”

The Minister also addressed what can help alleviate the problem. He said, “to use digital monitoring devices that would detect and red flag patients with uncontrolled diabetes, unstable congestive cardiac failure, renal impairment and this would allow us to move swiftly to stabilize these patients at the primary health care level preventing unnecessary hospitalization.”

Darville also announced the engagement of foreign health care professionals. He said, “three specialists physicians from the Republic of Cuba who are expected too be in country in a few months. Two ophthalmologists and one radiologist will join that PHA team this budget cycle enhancing our hospital capabilities to provide cross training opportunities for physicians. Over the next few months, my ministry plans to engage another eight biomedical engineers, two respiratory therapists, twelve lab technologists, radiographers from Cuba to fill the gaps at our reference lab, expand services at our poly clinics in New Providence, Princess Margaret Hospital and the Rand Memorial Hospital.”