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...More nurses needed to boost surgeries

By Sue-Ann Wayow

THE addition of ten Chinese medical personnel to the staff at the San Fernando General Hospital will not increase the number of surgeries at the hospital, says its medical director, Dr Anand Chatoorgoon.


He said unless more nurses were on staff, the number of surgeries would remain the same.

Two weeks ago, a delegation of nine consultants and one nurse from China began working at the hospital as a result of an agreement between the governments of China and Trinidad and Tobago.

Chatoorgoon said they were working alongside the local surgeons.

He said: “They (the team) have integrated into our system. We have assigned the Chinese surgeons to the different specialists in our hospital. They are working with our surgeons on their regular operating days for the time being. They are working side by side with our doctors exchanging ideas and learning from one another.”

Chatoorgoon said the hospital was in the process of evaluating its extensive waiting list for surgeries.

He said: “We cannot have more operating sessions unless we have more nurses. So they being here will not address that. If we get more nurses, we can then have more operating sessions. Then they may have operating sessions by themselves. There is not going to be any expected increase in the numbers at this time.”

Chatoorgoon said the hospital was in the process of attempting to have operations on evenings from four o’ clock to 8 o’ clock.

Last October, after years of being without a resident neurosurgeon, at the San Fernando General Hospital, a Cuban specialist was assigned but chief executive officer Anil Gosine said one neurosurgeon was not enough. This January, another neurosurgeon from Belize was also assigned.

Yesterday, Gosine said the SWRHA was elated that ten more people were on staff.

He said: “Our heads and consultants met with the doctors from the Republic of China. We have worked out how they can work with us and assist us in improving services and also increasing output in other and surgical services. We are putting systems in place to work with them to have more neurosurgical procedures done.”

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