Monday 21 October, 2019

SLP accuses UWP of hiding real intentions for healthcare

As the anxiety of the people of Saint Lucia increases over the health care crisis confronting the country, Saint Lucians should dismiss the appearance on television of Prime Minister Allen Chastanet and Ministers Guy Joseph and Mary Isaac as: “a desperate attempt at damage control-public relations and political propaganda.”

The so-called panel discussion was clearly scripted and stage-managed to advance the Government’s ill-conceived post-election health schemes. Wednesday night’s propaganda production by the Prime Minister and his discredited Ministers provided no credible answers to the health care crisis, and was a failed attempt to hide the Government’s real intentions, which are:

1. To hand over the current St. Jude’s Hospital property to foreign concerns (whether DSH or a medical school) who have no interest in the health care needs of ordinary Saint Lucians;

2. To hand over the Owen King European Union Hospital to private foreign interests who will profiteer off the health needs of Saint Lucians; and

3. To hastily set up a privately run National Health Insurance Scheme so as to funnel state resources into the pockets of chosen family, friends and foreign interests.

The Saint Lucia Labour Party should say a “categoric and resounding NO” to all three dubious intentions of the Allen Chastanet Regime. Saint Lucians should be warned against the current confrontational course adopted by the Government, and insist that the Government yields to the collective wisdom of Saint Lucians, which dictate the following:

1. Immediately resume work and complete St. Jude’s Hospital with a view to moving the hospital out of the National Stadium with due urgency and dispatch;

2. Abandon the ill-conceived plans for the privatization of the Owen King EU Hospital and for a privately-run National Health Insurance scheme;

3. Begin a process of mutually respectful engagement and consultation with the major stakeholders affected by this health-care crisis (including the Saint Lucia Medical and Dental Association, the relevant Trade Unions, Civil Society Groups like the Vieux Fort Concerned Citizens Coalition, the National Insurance Corporation, and the people of Saint Lucia generally, through their legitimate representatives and organisations; so as to resolve the issues in a nationally acceptable manner.

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