Care to be proud of, says Inniss
Barbados’ health care system has been given a thumbs up and is said in many respects to be even better than that in the United States of America.
Minister of Health Donville Inniss made the comment while speaking to the DAILY NATION on Sunday before the start of his annual constituency Christmas party at Wanstead Ridge,?St James.
Inniss said he was not going to sit back and take the licks that Barbadians must have all the sub-specialties “here and now” at no cost at all to them.
He said most people did not realise that, worldwide, health care was one of the biggest issues facing most countries.
“[Take President Barack] Obama, in the United States of America], that is his No. 1 problem, In the UK [and in] Canada, it is one of the main issues. The thing about it is that every Barbadian in this country expects that they can have access to the latest and the best health care and the latest skill sets available for the limited resources that the state provides. I will not fool myself or the people.”
The minister said Barbadians were very fortunate to have a cadre of excellent doctors, general practitioners as well as those who had developed specialists skills over the years, and he was satisfied that coupled with the nursing staff, they had been doing an excellent job to ensure that there was a great health care system.
“Barbadians can get open heart surgery at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital and don’t have to know the cost of it. Show me where in the USA you can get that! Show me where in the USA you can go to a doctor’s office and don’t have to present an insurance card!
“Show me where in the world you can get renal dialysis and don’t know the cost of it!
“Show me where in the world you can get medication for most illnesses and don’t have to know the cost of it! I’m not going to sit back and take the licks that Barbadians must have all the sub-specialties available here and now at no costs to all Barbadians. It has never happened and it will never happen like that.”
Inniss noted that while people sometimes felt Government had a bottomless pit of money, it was a tough balancing act, but said he was satisfied “that the successive Governments, in particular this administration” had done the best they could with the resources.
“People expect you can go and hire a doctor at $200 000 a year and buy $2 million in state-of-the-art equipment and then have recurrent maintenance costs at $1/2 million a year because the Government has a bottomless pit of money, but it is a tough balancing act,” Inniss stated. (CT)