“No Basic Equipment! No Gloves! Cat Infestation! Continued Covid-19 outbreaks!” These were just some of the complaints that were reported following phone interviews with employees at the Scarborough General Hospital. According to the employees, the Chief of Medical Staff and the Health Secretary were engaged in covering up the continued outbreaks that were occurring at the hospital.
Just as Progressive Democratic Patriots (PDP), Assemblyman Dr. Faith B.Yisrael, previously attributed these outbreaks to a lack of leadership and lack of proper mechanisms in place, to mitigate the rapid spread of the virus, so too did the employees.
They stated that despite their many concerns, patients continued to not be tested, particularly patients entering the hospital from the accident and emergency department. The staff members who were contacted, also reported that there continued to be an irresponsible interchanging of doctors and nurses, which posed high risks of possible infections of both patients and staff members.
According to the employees, many nurses continued to be hired on two to three months’ contracts whilst working as a front line worker during the pandemic. These front line nurses are still not privileged to any benefits such as sick leave.
President of the Public Services Association (PSA), Watson Duke, previously stated that the rise in Covid-19 cases in Tobago, particularly at the Scarborough General Hospital (SGH), was solely due to Health Secretary Tracy Davidson-Celestine and her lack of direction. Duke had given his comment following multiple reports made to the PSA by its Tobagonian members.