once heard you share a wonderful anecdote on the radio that gave an image
of a large family of scant resources and a powerful work ethic that made
you who you are.
don’t doubt any of it. You don’t really need this difficult job as
health minister, but you give back to the country. I believe you are
have my own anecdote for you. A grandfather gave his granddaughter a gold
chain on her seventh birthday, with her name engraved on it. She wore it
all day long, skipped and ran about.
the evening it wasn’t around her neck anymore. When her grandfather
asked her if she’d lost it, she shrugged. She said the chain “lost
itself.” She wasn’t taking any responsibility.
think of that now as three-year-old Faith Williams died as a result of
being administered “too much” anesthesia, and of the administering
anesthetist’s defence, which was effectively: “It wasn’t me.
machine did it. The bio-med people did it. Anybody could have done it.
Somebody was trying to make the health minister look bad. They put a
faulty machine there.
it found its own way there. We have locked up the bad machine with
understand you taking responsibility while the medical board lies low for
two years (its time frame).
all know nothing will come out of that unless it suits the men in white.
They are hoping by then we will forget about it. We probably will. Faith
Williams’ life is clearly expendable.
dispute over Williams’ death is not between a negligent doctor and an
accountable Medical Board. No, it’s between a bad machine and the vast
opaque body called the “state.”
machine vs an administration equals nothing. It didn’t happen. If you
made the medical professionals accountable, you would have to ask
was the last time the Medical Board held anybody in their professional
accountable? What complaints body has the board set up for patients and
their families to go to if their loved one has died or horribly messed up
because of negligence?
a journalist I have received dozens of letters from bereaved families who
were victims of medical negligence and what amounts to extortion, since
ill people are the most desperate for care).
is the medical profession up in arms at your efforts to regulate them when
they haven’t even come up with a code of ethics or bill of rights for
patients who should, by right, be handed to every patient who enters a
isn’t it mandatory for doctors to go for continuing education as it is
for doctors in every country with a decent healthcare system?
can doctors work for the ministry and pass on patients from government
hospitals to their own private practice? What criteria do they use to
I asked questions, years back, only the handful of amazing doctors that
exist in this country who take their oath seriously supported a code of
saw me as their enemy rather than a reminder of their Hippocratic Oath to
care for the ill and the wretched.
yourself questions. You know that the UN’s marker of every developed
country is the percentage of GDP they spend on health?
are nurses and other health professionals not encouraged to get a degree
in their profession? Why is there no discipline or clear line of authority
so health workers are held accountable?
how long minister, will the bad machine be locked up? Does this mean no
more children will die?