‘Missing’ drugs from Suddie Hospital found at MMU warehouse
… public apology demanded for hospital staff
Councillors of the Region Two Regional Democratic Council (RDC) are calling on Public Health Ministry and Materials Management Unit (MMU) officials to public apologise to staff members of the Suddie Public Hospital in relation to scandalous remarks made in relation to drugs not found at the hospital’s stores.
According to Head of the Region Two Health and Sanitation Committee, Arnold Adams, the hospital’s staff, particularly those attached to the pharmacy, were publicly embarrassed in the press over the issue of ‘allegedly missing’ drugs.
In presenting the Region Two Health Report at the Statutory RDC meeting for the month of July, Adams disclosed that a pharmacy staffer had informed him that, in regard to a set of drugs the region could not account for, conclusive investigations had found those drugs at the MMU warehouse.
Adams said staffers were told by the MMU that the drugs were never uplifted by the Suddie Public Hospital. As such, he contends, the MMU needs to apologise to staffers at the Suddie Public Hospital for the allegations made against them.
Upon hearing this information, Region Two Chairman Devanand Ramdatt concurred with the opinion that the reputation of the hospital staffers had been tarnished, and called for the MMU to issue a public statement clearing those persons’ names.
Ramdatt expressed dissatisfaction at the way the Public Health Ministry investigation was conducted in the first place — no regional official being informed that an investigation was underway.
An ambulance driver, a nurse and a pharmacist were in March each granted $20,000 station bail for the alleged theft of pharmaceuticals consigned to the Suddie Hospital. A press release issued by the Public Health Ministry (MPH) had said the Guyana Police Force was investigating “fraud” at the Suddie Public Hospital following a visit by the Ministerial Task Force.
The MPH press release had said the Task Force members had visited the hospital and the authorities there “could not account for several items sent” by the Materials Management Unit (MMU) to the hospital.
Several other irregularities were allegedly unearthed. Allegedly, in one instance, the pharmacist at the hospital could not account for several ampules of pethidine, codine and morphine sent by the MMU. In another instance, the Dangerous Drugs Register hadn’t been updated; the last entry was made sometime in 2015, the MPH statement had alleged.
The team had also found instances when the stock of narcotic drugs could not be accounted for, and other instances when the pharmacist had extra drugs that were still not recorded as prescribed under the law. (Indrawattie Natram)