On Tuesday, Bounty shared the video footage on his Instagram page, which showed some persons sleeping in chairs and others lying on the ground on pieces of cardboard.
In expressing consternation, the Warlord declared that health care, though critical, appears not to be a Government priority.
“Andrew Holness, Health/Education/National Security is every country most important priorities. Nurses Teachers and Police being under paid. So when unuh finding money to raise parliamentarians salaries 200% and more, yu didn’t know about the condition of our hospitals? Take one year of your salary and donate it to buying some beds POOR PEOPLE FED unuh do more to the people than for the people god not sleeping though👏🏿👏🏿,” the Poor People Fed Up artist wrote.
“That’s the state of the Cornwall Regional Hospital in mobay😕☹️,” he added.
Senior Medical Officer at the Cornwall Regional Hospital, Dr. Derek Harvey, according to a Nationwide News report, has since explained that the mostly elderly patients who were seen sleeping on floors and in wheelchairs, in the video which has been circulating online, are “social cases.”
Dr. Harvey said that the patients tend to congregate on the hospital’s compound as “they have nowhere else to go,” according to the report.
Additionally, he said that social cases at Cornwall Regional fall into two categories, meaning persons who have been discharged from the hospital but have not been picked up by relatives, and those who live on the street”.
Dr. Harvey also told Nationwide that there are 32 social cases at Cornwall Regional at present an that “chairs are provided to accommodate them”.
Bounty’s lamentations came on the same day Health and Wellness Minister Christopher Tufton revealed that only 47 percent of equipment in public health facilities is fully functional, due mainly to poor maintenance. This, the Minister said, has affected the level of efficiency in the public health sector.
During Tuesday’s signing ceremony between the ministry and the island’s four regional health authorities to implement a Medical Equipment Maintenance Management Policy, for the effective maintenance of medical equipment used for the “diagnosis, treatment and prognosis of patients at health facilities”, Dr. Tufton had said that of the 1,853 pieces of equipment assessed in the four regional health authorities, only 47 percent were fully functional.
He also revealed that 39 percent were fairly functional, and 15 percent of regarded as non-functional.
Dr Tufton also said that there was too much downtime in the sector from non-functioning equipment, which cultivates a “misery” factor among staff, who are unable to do their jobs, and patients, who are not able to access desired service, according to a Gleaner report.
The Minister had also described the regional health authorities’ previous approach to the maintenance of hospital equipment as ad hoc” and said that the policy will “standardise the protocol and approach for repairs”.
The medical equipment maintenance policy is the first of four that the Ministry of Health and Wellness will implement over time. The others which are scheduled are to “guide the maintenance of air conditioners and autoclaves; civil works such as buildings, roofs, ceilings, windows and doors; and vehicles”, according to the news report.
In elaborating further on the matter, Dr. Tufton had said that one of the policy’s key elements will be to ensure that internal technical teams receive the latest training, so the health sector does not become outdated in its “ability to respond and to maintain and to keep these equipment running”.
Dr. Tufton also revealed that each Regional Health Authority will be given $500 million to undertake infrastructure improvements and equipment replacement for two facilities.