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|Death of waiting octogenarian…|
|Tuesday, 26 June 2012 21:40|
GPHC starts review, promising action to avoid recurrence
THE Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC) announced yesterday that it has begun a thorough review of the circumstances leading up to the death of 82-year-old Vernon Roberts, who succumbed in a wheelchair at the Accident and Emergency (A&E) Unit, while waiting to see a doctor on Monday. Management of the institution has assured that, should the staff of the A&E be found culpable of any negligence, in relation to this or any other patient, the appropriate action will be taken to make sure there is no recurrence.
In a press statement, the GPHC Public Relations Department said: “Management of the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation read, with much concern, the article which was published in the June 26, 2012 edition of the Chronicle newspaper under the caption, ’82-year-old man dies in wheelchair – after waiting four hours to see a doctor’ and advises that a thorough review of this case has already commenced.”
Management said, it is noteworthy that, as at May 2012, a new system was implemented at the A&E Unit, wherein a doctor was placed in the Triage Area to assist with the assessment of patients who come to the unit. This system is geared at reducing the initial waiting time that patients would have to spend to be seen by a doctor.
The statement concluded: “Management of the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation assures that all measures are being explored in order to improve the quality of service provided to the public and implores that patience is exercised – the system will improve.”
The hospital has a system in place which demands robust evaluation of patients and strict documentation of findings, in determining whether the patient is an urgent or non-urgent case.
“Strict documentation is something that is mandated and must be done by the doctors. Patients who are waiting to be seen by doctors are continually reassessed while they are waiting,” the guidelines state.
The investigations surrounding the demise of octogenarian Roberts will determine whether these essentials were robustly observed during the hours he waited to be seen by a doctor on Monday.
Meanwhile, persons (including patients and their relatives in the A&E Unit) having witnessed the passing of the man in the triage area on Monday afternoon, would like the hospital to make a public announcement as to whether senior citizens and very young children should be given priority attention at the A&E Unit.
Persons would also like it to be made known, whether an 82-year-old who arrives at the institution with breathing complications is to be classified as an ‘urgent’ or ‘non-urgent’ case.
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