Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : November 17th 2015 Contents A7
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A committee examining local health system in
which doctors operating in private practice also
work in the public sector, will examine infant mor-
tality problems in T&T and the Children s Hospital
as well, Prime Minister Keith Rowley said yester-
The committee is also mandated to conduct an
audit of the level of health care delivery by the 21-
year-old regional health authority system.
Members will give recommendations on the state
of dual systems---doctors with private practice working
in the public sector---and review how operations in
both systems are governed in keeping with the new
vision for health care.
Team members are Dr Winston Welch (chairman),
Howard University president Dr Wayne Frederick,
Professor Karl Theodore, Charles de Gannes, Dr Adesh
Sirjusingh, Valerie Alleyne-Rawlins and Dr Albert
Speaking at the launch at his St Clair office, Rowley
lauded Frederick s involvement which he said would
bring a view from outside T&T on the matter.
When the team reports by April 2016, Rowley said
its recommendations may be factored into Govern-
ment s mid-year review in the event that changes
Rowley, noting an observation in the newspapers
that the PNM s style was "government by review,"said
he had taken that as a compliment.
He said in T&T, "we have been doing a lot of things
and spending a lot of money and getting a lot of
complaints about money we have spent, what we are
doing and dissatisfaction associated with the efforts."
He said doctors, for instance, would agree that
before going forward to "prescribe" on issues, one
had to diagnose and to understand situations, "so we
are not put out by the idea that we are reviewing
T&T s status."
Rowley echoed sentiments by Welch that the team s
work was not aimed at anyone or any sector.
He said it was an opportunity for national com-
munity to know what was working and not, costs
and what is available or not, "and how to make things
better in what is available to us."
Rowley said he had been in Cabinet in 1991 when
expenditure on health as well as public expectation
on that sector had grown.
"We are spending more and more on education
and health and getting less and less. This is because
some of the system is inherently unworkable."
Rowley said from a personal standpoint, he was
uncertain if RHAs had brought any significant handling
in health care delivery as compared to what the min-
istry might have done.
He said if he was wrong, Government needed to
know and the team s exercise was geared to give a
final answer on that. Noting that health had the third
largest budget allocation, he said Government had to
"look at what we are doing.
"We see so many stories from RHAs, usually bad,
our health care clearly is not obsolete or antiquated
but it attracts dissatisfactions and questions, including
corruption in the system," he added.
The team s report will be presented to him and will
be open to the public.
The team will note reports from previous com-
missions on enquiry on health. The PM urged the
public to make valid contributions, as opposed to
complaint, since Government would welcome rea-
Reacting to the terrorist attack on Paris which
left 129 dead and over 300 wounded, Roman Catholic
priest Monsignor Christian Pereira said yesterday:
"The only thing that can take down ISIS is the power
Speaking to the media at the San Fernando City
Corporation Senior Citizens Appreciation Day, Pereira
also said it was very sad where the world was right
now. He said it was important "that we demolish
institutions like ISIS and other terrorists organisations.
Priest: Power of love can take down ISIS
It is not a time for destroying civilisation."
He said while destroying the terrorist group would
be left to the world security forces, "the majority of
us as a people have to rekindle that spirit of love and
mutual care for one another." Pereira who blessed the
gathering of the elderly who live in the city, condemned
the use of religion for the commital of acts of violence.
Recalling that the terrorists shouted "Allahu Ackbar"
before they carried out six simultaneous attacks in
Paris last Friday evening Pereira said: "Nobody can
use religion or use God to justify violence... no Muslims,
Hindus, Christians, nobody. "That is a distortion of
religion. Some people believe that somehow their mis-
interpretation of the particular scripture gives them
a licence to destroy human beings but we have to
understand that there is one true God who wants us
to develop a culture of civilisation of love."
Saying that T&T is not immune from the terrorist
attacks as some of nationals have been reportedly
fighting with the Islamic state, Pereira said there was
a real possibility what occurred in Paris could also
happen here. "We have to be very, very vigilant. I
hope our security, our authorities know how to deal
with this crisis. It fundamentally challenges us to
recreate that culture of respect and love that would
dismantle possible and destructive terrorist organi-
sations," he added. He welcomed the celebration of
the elderly to make them feel appreciated and not
discarded. San Fernando mayor Kazim Hosein, who
hosted the celebration in commemoration of City
Week, called on the younger generation to cherish the
elderly and not take people for granted.
He related an incident how he was "cussed out"
by a "big strapping man who drove up in a big black
Prado and parked in the handicapped zone at Super-
pharm," to demonstrate the lack of respect for the
elderly and less able. Hosein said when told the driver
it was a handicapped zone and advised him to park
elsewhere, "he cussed me."
Team to look at T&T's
health system named
Chairman of the Health Care Delivery Review Committee, Dr Winston Welch, is
congratulated by Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley after receiving his letter of
appointment at the Office of the Prime Minister, St Clair, yesterday. Looking on
is Health Minister Terrence Deyalsingh. PHOTO: NICOLE DRAYTON
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