Charges will be laid against family members who attacked West Demerara Regional Hospital (WDRH) employees and destroyed hospital property last Sunday night (April 30, 2017).
The police today (Wednesday, May 03, 207), interviewed Dr. Shonette Jack, who witnessed the entire 25-minute fracas in the WDRH Emergency Room Sunday. This is according to ‘D’ Division Commander, Leslie James.
He made the disclosure during a meeting at the WDRH boardroom with Public Health Minister, Volda Lawrence, several ranks of the Guyana Police Force (GPF) and senior Region three (Essequibo Islands/West Demerara) officials.
James owned up to “several lapses” made by his ranks who he admitted “didn’t act promptly” when complaints were made by WDRH staff who were verbally and physically attacked by an irate family demanding immediate attention for an injured member.
“What concerned me more is that three calls had to be made before assistance could be rendered to the (assaulted) staff. This is very, very worrying. This ought to be have been treated with urgency,” Lawrence told Regional and police authorities.
Commander James who has been posted to Region Three, some eight months ago has promised to restart nightly checks at the health facility. James also promised to meet with executives of Home Safe, the firm contracted to provide security at the WDRH and highlight the need for stronger qualification for security agents under their charge.
“We have to work together,” to guarantee the much-needed changes, Essequibo Islands/West DemeraraRegional Executive Officer (REO), Mr. Denis Jaikaran (Snr)told the meeting. Jaikaran also promised to conduct a probe into the security issues dogging the regional health facility. He also promised to pursue a “hands on” with the security issues highlighted by the hospital staff.
They told Lawrence, who took the opportunity to tour the facility again, that Region Three residents routinely target hospital employees with verbal and physical attacks but they had had enough after Sunday’s episode.
In addition to the weekly assaults they experience from extremely angry residents, many under the influence of alcohol, hospital workers also disclosed that residents deliberately destroy electricity lamps which illuminate the hospital environment.
Dr. Ahmad Ramroop reiterated workers’ plea for “enhanced security” at all health facilities in the thriving agriculture Region.
Meanwhile, Minister Lawrence has personally written WDRH medical staff who were victims of Sunday’s vicious verbal and personal attacks, assuring them that the Ministry of Public Health is ready to offer support services which may be required, as well as take measures to ensure that the security services are strengthened at the Hospital.
According to reports, on the night of the incident, a drunken man and his relatives assaulted a doctor and damaged furniture and other items at the Regional Hospital after they were told that the X-Ray machine there was not working. Doctors and at least one patient at the facility were also assaulted.