Eighteen patients at the Bustamante Hospital for Children (BHC) on Labour Day benefitted from well-needed surgeries which had been postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The surgeries were performed as part of an effort by the hospital to reduce the waiting list for operations.
In an interview with JIS News, Minister of State in the Ministry of Health and Wellness Hon. Juliet Cuthbert-Flynn, who was on location to provide support, lauded the move by the BHC staff.
“This is a great Labour Day initiative, and it is even more special because there is a backlog due to COVID 19,” the State Minister said.
“For the last two years many surgeries could not happen and so what the staff have done is to make sure that they clear some of the backlog” she added.
The State Minister took the opportunity to thank the surgeons, doctors and nurses who came together on the day to reduce the number on the waiting list for surgeries.
Consultant Anaesthetist Dr. Brian James said that every year on Labour Day, the team would undertake an activity at the hospital that would benefit patients.
“This year, given the problem with the pandemic and the number of patients who have been left behind because of it, we had decided that this is what we are going to do” he said.
Dr. James added that up to 3,000 patients have been deferred because of the pandemic and that a subcommittee on backlog response was created in December 2021.
The committee’s decision was to perform 20 surgeries, orthopaedic and general, the Consultant Anaesthetist explained, for patients that had been deferred. He said that the day turned out reasonably well and added that two patients were unable to have the surgeries done because of their COVID-19 results.
“It was an absolute success, everybody came together, everybody pitched in and we did really well” Dr. James stated.
He further explained that most of procedures were orthopaedic to include persons who had “metal work put in for fractures and needed to have them removed”.
“On the general surgery side, the operations that would fit our criteria are mainly hernias. May people are not aware that hernias are among the most common surgeries that we do at Bustamante Hospital. So on Labour Day we had children from as young as four years old up to 12 years old” Dr. James added.
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