Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : August 23rd 2013 Contents A9
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Health Minister Dr Fuad Khan
is planning to crack down on
medical laboratories which oper-
ate without qualified personnel
He was speaking after several
doctors complained that medical
labs were springing up all over T&T
without proper monitoring by the
Khan admitted that problem
should be on the front burner.
"To be honest, we have not been
engaged in regulating labs because
we had no major complaints about
it. However, we realise now that
this is a problem which must be
addressed urgently because we are
finding a lot of discrepancies in lab
results," Khan told the T&T
Asked whether he will be piloting
legislation to regulate labs, Khan
said that would be done next year.
He added: "Right now we are
trying to pass the Nurses and Mid-
wife Act and the Pharmacy Board
Act and this is taking some time.
From next year we will begin look-
ing at passing a specific act to mon-
itor and regulate labs.
"This should be done urgently
and will be part of our primary
Asked whether an authority
would be established to specifically
monitor labs, Khan said that had
not yet been decided.
"We haven t established how we
idea to have an authority in place
just as we have an ambulance
authority," he said.
He added that the Medical
Accreditation Authority would be
responsible for regulating all med-
ical institutions, including labs.
Khan said consultations would
be held with stakeholders to discuss
He noted that Ramsaran s Lab
in St Augustine was the only inter-
nationally accredited lab in the
country. Checks by the T&T
Guardian revealed the lab is 1SO
15189 certified and has joint accred-
itation with the Standards Council
Public relations officer of the
T&T Medical Association, Dr Frank
Ramlakhansingh, said the crack-
down on non-accredited labs was
He said: "For many years we
have been clamouring for regular-
He said recently a patient with
a life-threatening disease was diag-
nosed positive for herpes.
"I did not believe the result so
I sent it to Ramsaran s Lab for ver-
ification and this result came back
negative. This is a life-threatening
situation and we cannot have labs
being run by technicians who have
an affiliation to a doctor," Ram-
He added that a lot of labs had
cropped up within recent times.
"Anybody could set up a lab
behind their office. They are mush-
rooming all over the place without
qualified technicians. There should
be a recognised body to deal with
this," Ramlakhansingh said.
He said too much skulduggery
was going on and patients lives
were under threat.
Archbishop of Port-
of-Spain Joseph Harris
and prisons chaplain Fr
Robert Christo will meet
with prisoners tomor-
row for an evening of
prayer and spiritual dia-
logue on the grounds of
Archbishop s House,
Fuad plans to crack
down on medical labs
Queen s Park West.
Fr Christo explained
the three-hour pro-
gramme will include dia-
logue with the archbishop
and the chaplain, inter-
spersed with prayers and
set periods of reflection,
all aimed at emphasising
the church s interest in
The session is also
aimed at pursuing efforts
by the RC Church to help
build a strategic alliance
between the prisons min-
istry and the State, while
espousing the philosophy
of restorative justice.
Also expected to par-
ticipate in the session,
which begins at 3 pm, are
members of the prisons
ministry as well as pris-
Archbishop, prisoners to meet in prayer
We're not sure who erected
this huge wooden cross tied
to a lightpost near the United
States Embassy on Marli
Street, Port-of-Spain, but the
message reads "Injustice
Anywhere Is A Threat."
PHOTO: NICOLE DRAYTON
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