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Ministry of Health focused on addressing issues with health care providers

The investigation surrounding the death of three month old Dion Woodeye in Corozal Town is ongoing. The nurse who was on shift has not been placed on administrative leave as she took personal leave from the job. The Nursing Council is leading the investigation and is expected to hand in a report on its findings on Wednesday. Today Dr. Marvin Manzanero, Director of Health Services, says that it is not the first case that the council has looked into. And like CEO in the Miistry of Health, Dr. Ramon Figueroa said on Thursday, Dr. Manzanero says they are concerned that some health care providers don’t seem to care about the service they provide to those entrusted in their care.

Marvin Manzanero Director of Health Services: “You can’t say insubordination I mean when you check the definition there is a specific definition of that. Due to public service regulations you might not be able to just do away with somebody you have to go through the process so even if you put somebody on administrative leave for five days and after five days the person has to go back to work because that is what the rules would say until you have finished that investigation and taken necessary action, it is just like when you have a court case until you are proven or they have taken some action so we wait on nursing councils to see what they would say on Wednesday once they have the discussions and then they will put mechanisms in place or whatever comes out of that. We have taken some steps in terms of disciplining staff but that is something I don’t want to discuss because it is affecting certain persons and I think from the discussions that we have had if people need to be let go people will be let go. There are certain things that you are not going to be able to change. Behavior change is not going to happen mind you there has been the discussion in medical articles that talk about the millennial generation and how they are detached. I am not saying that is the situation here but that is something that I know medical schools are starting to factor in because then it becomes more of a technical job rather than the art mind you I sit on the Medical Council and we have had this discussion. The ethical dilemma of where we’re going as a health system. We had a meeting last week Tuesday that brought in the Belize Medical and Mental association, the Nursing association, the respective councils and the management teams where we are trying to address the matter on how we are going to address the situations where the impression is that the Nurse, Doctor or the healthcare worker doesn’t care so it’s a serious concern for us. I mean me as a Clinician I can tell you you really need to have that passion there so you will really have to find a mechanism as to how you will deal with that particular situation. It is a balancing situation because if you are also going to be there but you are not doing your job then I might as well not have you there because you are dealing with patients, you are dealing with people who are coming to the system because they need a health system so the human resources aspect is something I think all countries in the region are battling with but we have to work ourselves around that. I think that the key areas that you are trying to zone in is okay how do we deal with persons who are not doing their job? That is the primary thing I mean just not doing what you are paid for that is the concern and this front line healthcare workers we are talking about so that is the concern.

According to Dr. Manzanero, there is a national undertaking to provide training to health care providers but it is something that has been a priority long before this case.

Marvin Manzanero Director of Health Services: “There is ongoing training, there is an emergency Triage training that the Commissioner of Orange Walk and Corozal is hosting and that is up in the next two weeks but that is not just a result of this that is apart of an ongoing training that happens so once you do an investigation you also have to find out whether it is a training situation that happens. There is layers of involvement in that investigation that is happening so one of the weakness identified across the country is emergency room triage which is also the reason why there is a national undertaking in terms of training people on the ground so that training will happen in Corozal with nurses and Doctors. It is a two day training and we will also taking people from Orange Walk who can also benefit from the training.

We understand that the nurse at the center of the controversy has returned to work at the Corozal Community Hospital.