The Fiji First Government has been living in denial about the rot of public health and medical services in the country resulting in this critically important component of essential and life-saving service in a state of decay, said National Federation Party Leader Professor Biman Prasad.
Professor Prasad made the comment after concerns about the lack on investment to improve infrastructure in the country’s largest hospitals of CWM and Lautoka were raised by the Pacific Island Pacemaker Services chairwoman Dr Fiona Riddell. He said the Fiji First government hasn’t pumped in money and resources, clearly breaching Section 38 the 2013 Constitution that stipulates the “State must take reasonable measures within its available resources to achieve the progressive realisation of the right of every person to health, and to the conditions and facilities necessary to good health, and to health care services, including reproductive health care”.
Professor Prasad added that during the last 8 years of parliamentary democracy, the NFP had raised issues about many health concerns through End of Week Statements and moved Motions calling for an holistic bipartisan parliamentary inquiry.
The NFP Leader said such an inquiry would have identified the problems and advocated solutions, but these were totally rejected by the Fiji First government, which labelled the cold hard facts as rubbish.
“And now we have a medical professional, who has been linked to Fiji’s public health and medical services, repeat the sad reality and conclude that there seems to be no money to invest in the improvement of hospitals”.
“There is no denying that in the last four years, Fiji has had the worst Health Minister in the independent history of our nation”.
“What is utterly shameful is that the current Health Minister is a former medical professional who served as a leading surgeon, medical superintendent of the CWM Hospital as well as taught students who have graduated as doctors”.
“And then we have the Attorney-General and Fiji’s defacto Prime Minister make a insanely irresponsible statements about the provision of 24-hour heart surgeries and other treatment at Lautoka Hospital in what has clearly turned out to be an election gimmick”.
“The AG announced in March it would start in May. Four months later, patients diagnosed with heart-related ailment are anxiously waiting to receive treatment with no indication at all about the proposed start date of the life-saving treatment”.
“One of the first priorities of the People’s Alliance-NFP government after the elections will be to hold a holistic parliamentary inquiry and involve medical professionals and experts in delivery of public health and medical services to find sound and sensible solutions to restore the quality of this essential service”.
“But before that, the power lies in the hands of the people to kick out this heartless, insensitive and cruel government”.
Professor Biman Prasad Leader