Lives at risk, say doctors
TWO of the three Operating Theatres at the National Referral Hospital have been closed for repair since December.
And despite assurances from health authorities to do the repair work sooner, nothing has been done since.
“We are now into the third month of closure,” Dr Paul Hitchin, an Orthopaedic Surgeon from Sydney, Australia, told the Solomon Star, Wednesday.
Dr Paul is a visiting surgeon assisting local doctors at the hospital.
“The closure of these two operating theatres means more patients are expected to miss out on important surgery in the coming days, weeks or even months if the renovation work is delayed,” he added.
“This is an urgent problem that needs to be addressed as soon as possible to allow patients that need surgery to have access to the operating Theatres.
“Many patients booked to undergo surgery have had their bookings cancelled since the theatres closed last December.”
Dr Paul said with only one theatre available, priority is currently given to emergency cases only while the rest will have to wait.
“At the moment patients need to wait patiently, but then waiting patiently in this case means suffering,” he said.
Conditions inside the operation theatres were made worse by water leaking through the ceiling as well as leakages within the building itself.
The Solomon Star was told authorities kept assuring the doctors that the “repair will start next week but it never happened”.
The hospital’s chief executive officer Dr Steve Aumanu could not be reached for comments.
By BIRIAU WILSON SAENI