31 Oct 2008

The view through the Looking Glass

Ah yes, we have it straight from the horse's mouth: the Ministry of Health is to be revamped.

At yesterday's post-Cabinet media conference at the Diplomatic Centre, St Ann's, Narace said, ... that Government was working to establish a special fund under the promised National Health System (NHS)

Narace also boasted of Government's aim to become a first-world healthcare system with new hospitals.

This following the death of that little baby who needed the liver transplant.

Well, I worked in the Ministry of Health a long time, and despite the best efforts (and laudable ones from Wade Mark), that ministry is, was and will forever be an albatross winging its way with a millstone around it's neck. Too much of a negative image? That's an insider's opinion, and ought to make even the best supporter take pause.

On the question of the 'alleged' $60K promised by the ministry for the little baby Maurisa Khan, I agree with some of the comments published in the Express:

  • Ian Alleyne, head of Trinidad and Tobago's Crime Watch, who raised up to $759,000 through his television programme on WinTV, told the Express that the Ministry sent a letter to Maurisa's family but did not officially state how the money was to be issued, and the Ministry never contacted the mother on this.

  • My question to you sir:- How much did you pay for the Minister who is now stationed as Ambassador in Canada for her medical treatment in New York, not so long ago. (The minister woman who gave birth to twins.) I bet you paid more than $60,000 for her treatments, did you not? Can you justify how one life is worth more than another. When senior politicians fly overseas for medical treatment, the average bill paid for by the hard working citizens of T&T is certainly more than $60,000. So Mr. Narace, while we wait for your delusional National Health System to come to fruition, many of us will suffer undue hardships, and may die in pain, unnecessarily. We can build a P.M. Residence and Diplomatic Centre for almost $200 Million, and counting, multi-million dollar stadiums, carnival venue, performance arts centres, $4 million for a week long celebration, moving very fast to build an off-shore 'Dubai style city' off Mosquito Creek, our Prime Minister flies to and fro on private jets almost every week, over $100 million for VIP vehicles for conferences which will amount to over $500 million, etc., and yet we do not have the humanity to pay for our basic needs. Remember, Mr. Narace, this government has been boasting that 'we have money, lots of money' and cannot see fit to pay for the health care of our citizens. Bottom line, this government has failed us miserably. The time has passed for you to all hand in your resignation and vacate our offices, giving way for a government that will work for the interest of the citizens and not just a few 'special' people.

  • An oil & gas rich nation that had no problem spending over $1000.000.00 to bring an African head of state for emancipation day,but could not afford to save a child life????

  • I saw him laughing and joking yesterday at a news conference while the parents of this little and the rest of this country mourn. He should hang his head in shame. What a disgrace.

There are comments supporting the Ministry's stance that they have a budget, that they can't help everyone blah, blah, blah. I say "hogwash" to these.

For one thing, no one asked for 'everyone' to be saved. Just this one child, and in exceptional circumstances at that. And no one asked for $1.8M either. About 50% of the money was raised privately already.

For a country that can spend millions on trivial idiocies (Gray Hunt in the same newspaper is spending $102M to 'repair' 4 stadia built in only 2001!, and another billion on a stadium that is yet to be completed), one would think that a million dollars to help save an infant would be no big thing. After all, $500M will be spent next year to fete 200 persons.

This is my grouse. Whether the child would have lived or died, whether a liver could have been had for transplant (parts of liver can be transplanted now from a relative) is immaterial. The point is that the anointed spiritualist and his cronies have failed, once more, in matters of utmost urgency.

The Vision 2020 is a laughable view through a dirty Looking Glass. Even Alice's Wonderland and its Queen weren't as half crazy as this Monkey Island and its Executive.