Mother frustrated with healthcare system

December 11, 2018
Marlene McPherson

For months, Marlene McPherson has been going to the hospital with her 56-year-old son, but now, she is at wits end with the public hospital system.

On the brink of tears, she explained that her son, who has heart and prostate problems, has been on his medication and making progress. However, she has been plunged into depression because of the uncertainty surrounding an abdominal, renal and pelvic ultrasound that her son needs to do.

"I went to the hospital (Kingston Public Hospital, KPH) last Friday, and dem seh the [ultrasound] machine is not working. Den mi go deh dis morning (yesterday), and dem seh the machine bruk dung and dem nuh know when it a go fix," said the 79-year-old woman, who is her son's sole caregiver.




Checks made with KPH revealed that the ultrasound machine there had not been in use for some time. According to one employee, they are not sure when they will get another one, so persons will have to get their procedures done privately.

According to Health Minister Dr Christopher Tufton, he has knowledge of the issue and has received word that parts have been purchased for the machine to be repaired.

However, the mother of four said that she cannot afford to get the ultrasound done privately.

"Mi can't work. A mi other children dem a tek care a wi so far, and it rough. Mi can't always a call pan dem because dem haffi a buy wi food and the medication dem weh wi deh pan," she said.

"Mi can't afford it, and the health minister needs to do sup'm so that poor people can get the benefits. Mi just stressed out because mi nuh understand the doctor thing, and I don't know how serious this ultrasound thing can be," she said.

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