PAM Candidate – Mr. Glenroy Blanchette
Basseterre, St. Kitts – Nevis
People’s Action Movement
January 17, 2010
The recent death of an East Basseterre woman has once again placed the spotlight on how badly the country’s health care system is hurting and the cry for a change in the level of service continues, says PAM candidate, Glenroy Blanchette.
“I must say that we within the People’s Action Movement fully understand the importance of effective health care for the people of St Kitts and Nevis and I want to commit that under a PAM government, I will ensure that health care is taken to another level,” said Blanchette.
He pointed out that there are serious concerns regarding the current health care program, noting that a more effective system needs to be established to ensure that the lives of citizens and residents are saved and enhanced. Mr. Blanchette said that sustained efforts by the Labour Party to severely undermine affordable and equitable health services, has left the citizenry feeling in-secured.
He noted that it has become increasingly evident over the past 15 years, that the way health care is managed locally does not encourage “the right care at the right time”. He said that this month’s death of a woman at the hospital, who according to media reports, had waited for several hours before receiving treatment, highlights that people, especially women, children and the poor, are continually dying from unknown causes and cases deemed to be suspected negligence.
“We know that every time someone needs to undergo a major surgery they are forced to walk the streets to secure assistance through donations. We continue to see instances of our people dying because they are unable to garner the monies needed for advanced health care,” said Blanchette.
Blanchette further emphasised that the death of the woman and the refusal by the Ministry to explain to people what really occurred and what actions would be taken to prevent a reoccurrence, demonstrates that health care is not a priority of the Labour administration. He declared that an immediate and extensive investigation should be undertaken to determine the true cause of the woman’s death.
Blanchette who is considered the favourite to win the East Basseterre seat told supporters of his party at a recent public meeting that this is why the Peoples Action Movement, intends to introduce a Universal National Health Insurance Program that would provide local and overseas coverage for all citizens.
Blanchette argued that more effort is needed from government to support the work of the nation’s hard working health care providers, such as the nurses, doctors, nurses-aids, technicians, and others. There are just too many instances when these health care providers are ignored when pleas are made for more and modern equipment, medicines, vehicles and other assets, said Blanchette.
We must note that due to the lack of these assets, the level of quality and efficiency of care, provided across our federation is worrisome. While the labour government’s spending is high on campaign materials and other non essential services, our federation ranks horribly low in many areas of health care.”
The PAM Constituency One representative declared that, it is evident that the current health care system is not working and a change is needed if progress is to be possible. Blanchette added that the federation is witnessing a health system that is woefully ineffective and inefficient. He said that the quality of a nation’s health care is an indicator of the quality of that country’s governance.
Such services, he stressed, underpin the social contract between the government and citizens and, as such, acts as an indicator of the health of a society. Blanchette said that “the Prime Minister continues to boast from time to time, that the health sector has numerous programs, but he has failed miserably to inform the people of St Kitts and Nevis on a regular basis, of the success and failures of these programs.”