Friday, September 14, 2018

242NewsBahamas - It Is Now Time For Bahamians To Unite For Country, Not Self & 242 Weekly News Highlights

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It Is Now Time For Bahamians To Unite For Country, Not Self

Dear Readers,

This week's editorial comes from September 10th's Tribune Newspaper, printed with permission 

IT should come as no surprise that many Bahamians find the PLP's criticism of public healthcare somewhat disingenuous given their record of unconscionable neglect of the country's health institutions. It also causes the public to wonder, in view of their record, what all their fuss is now about as they claim contracts are being awarded to party faithful at BEC/BPL.

That said, it would be interesting if the former administration would explain how it spent $234m in the run-up to the last election, yet their board failed to repair the considerable damage suffered by the Princess Margaret Hospital and wards from Hurricane Matthew in 2015.

While recognising the right of any individual or entity to avail themselves of whatever course of action to which they might feel entitled, we cannot understand how the head of the Consultants' Union, a physician of such pre-eminence, could in good conscience, make demands or expect salary raises knowing that the hospital has no surplus funds to satisfy any demands at this time. Need he be reminded that all the cookies have disappeared from the cookie jar?

The frustrations and complaints of the consultants, doctors, and nurses and the appalling conditions under which members of the PHA team have had to work are justified. No one can doubt or question that.

However, nothing fruitful can result from the head of the Consultants' Union proclaiming such a self-destructive "Strike" ultimatum at the very time that members of the PHA are delivering private donations of computers/printers to his members; apologising to the radiology team for such unconscionable neglect and inviting private entities to assist the CDU team with fast-track renovations for both the Radiology Department and the old ICU section. Where does the Consultants' Union suggest that we now find enough funds to raise salaries and provide health insurance for them at this time?

The current chairman, board and PHA team, who have paid off mountains of debts, repaired ambulances for which the vendor had cut the PHA off for non-payment; undertaken repairs to the PMH roof and Corey-Newbold Ward; renovated the Labour Ward; approved software updates; finished renovations and installation of two brand new digital X-rays, CT scanner (PMH & Rand) PAX system in the Radiology Department before moving on to renovate the outdated A&E Department, children's wards and laundry. It is most unfortunate that the doctors' complaint for attention should come at this time.

The Consultants' Union's silence in response to the Central Bank stating that the former PLP administration spent some $234m in the run-up to the election, instead of putting the money into repairing the Princess Margaret Hospital - was absolutely deafening! And to make matters worse, the consultants were fully aware that the PMH had not issued a single patient's bill, A&E charge sheet or obtained reimbursement from any health providers relative to its share of hundreds of millions in charges providing clinical care, hospital fees, radiological services, medicines, EMS and Air Ambulance flights for applicable Bahamians and thousands of tourists since 2012 - six years without any bills being sent out or monies collected. What a brilliant way to operate a business.
No money coming in, yet hands out for a raise in salaries. Are there no managers with business skills anywhere in that institution?

We have no recollection of Dr Munroe's response when Parliament was informed during the Budget contribution in 2017 that the former administration approved monthly cleaning contracts for mini-hospitals in Exuma and Abaco - which were yet to be opened - to the tune of $424,638.84 and $500,000.

We think that this is what the Consultants' Union should not only be "shouting about"; but assisting the PHA team in doing something about. Wouldn't it be far more beneficial for them to focus their combined efforts on patient care and regularising the efforts of team members before turning their attention to the merits of introducing physicians fees for applicable patients in a mutually agreed upon formula?

Bahamians want opportunities for all. They are tired of the "all for me baby" attitude. They want affordable, first-rate healthcare, not lives cut short before they've had a chance to start. They want action, not promises. They want answers and accountability; not being told they don't have a right to know how their tax dollars are being spent. They want jobs, not unemployment. Bahamians today love the colour green. Just to be clear, they're not talking about the DNA. They are talking about green for the environment, green for the dollar and the green light for everyone to start moving.

If we wish our country to move together - to take advantage of its unique opportunities - then it is high time our politicians, unions and others stop the deception and personal agendas that are being magnified while failing to address many of the pressing issues facing this country. Instead, Bahamians should stand as a unifying force in our nation to transform our nation's delivery of health care.

Public service is a gift of one's self to one's country. Public servants should always remember that they are employed by those who they represent for the benefit of every individual in the Bahamas; not for their own personal objectives. Blindly making statements without verifying the accuracy would be like jumping off the bridge without looking below. "While that would be a misfortune," Britain's prime minister Benjamin Disraeli once commented, let's hope we never arrive at the point where should anyone pull us out "it would be considered a calamity!"

This Week's 242 News
Gunned Down In Front Of His Little Girl
The respected aide-de-camp to Governor General Dame Marguerite Pindling was shot in front of his daughter during a school pickup yesterday afternoon and later died in the Princess Margaret Hospital from his injuries.
#Inspector Carlis Blatch was immediately remembered for his professionalism and decency, with the Office of the Governor General noting he was someone who served with distinction. Read More On The Tribune Website
Senior Public Service Officials in Interactive Consultative Discussions over the Draft Public Financial Management Bill

Senior Officials in the Public Service are meeting over this three-week period to start intensive interactive consultative discussions over the Draft Public Financial Management Bill (PFM).
The initiative is being supported by the Caribbean Regional Technical Assistance Centre (CARTAC), one of the 10 International Monetary Fund Regional Technical Assistance Centers (RTACs) located around the world. Read More
GBPA's CCEI Program Supporting Growth for BPO Sector

As Grand Bahama students head back to school, high school seniors will have more and new options to prepare themselves for the workplace, within the island's growing Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) sector. Although Grand Bahama is a new and small player within this multi-billion-dollar industry; executives at The Grand Bahama Port Authority, Limited (GBPA), say that Freeport is ready to capture a greater share of the consistent growth and investments occurring within this burgeoning sector. Read More
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The Keep Grand Bahama Clean (KGBC) Committee celebrates a great victory as an indiscriminate dumper was hauled before the courts. As a part of its mandate the KGBC Committee advocates for a cleaner and healthier environment, and with the assistance of the Building and Development Services (B&DS) Department of The Grand Bahama Port Authority, Limited, (GBPA), the Royal Bahamas Police Force (RBPF), the Department of Environmental Health Services (DEHS), and Concerned Residents, the committee is one step closer.  Read More

Bahamas Power and Light (BPL) senior management won't say where or when in advance, but warned on Saturday that customers on New Providence will experience load shedding over the next few days as a result of a fire at its Clifton Pier power station on Friday night. Read More
Eleuthera's Youth Endorse Campaign to Save Lighthouse Point

Maureen A. Sedonaen once wrote, "Youth involvement has moved forward. It is no longer seen as a rebellious act, the way it was a few decades ago." For a trio of young activists from the island of Eleuthera, this couldn't be truer. Franchesca Hanna, 16, Kristman Moss, 15 and Wadainya Weinberger - all students of the Central Eleuthera High School recently gave their strong endorsement of, and lent their voices to, the Campaign to Save Lighthouse Point joining their adult counterparts from the One Eleuthera Foundation and the Bahamas National Trust on a media tour to raise awareness about the need for sustainable - and not commercial development of the area. Read More
Palm Cay's Restaurant Offers Great Cuisine, Waterfront Dining

Those looking for a great day out with exceptional cuisine enjoyed in gorgeous surroundings need look no further than Palm Cay's Clubhouse Restaurant - one of the few places on the southeastern shore of New Providence delivering a memorable waterfront dining experience fit for all ages, tastes and pocketbooks. Read More
BTVI student among small business grant winners

Bahamas Technical and Vocational Institute (BTVI) Grand Bahama student, Curlene Bain has landed a $5,000 grant to start a small business. She is the brainchild of FastCrafts Fast Ferry & Water Taxi Services, which she hopes to launch - thanks to the Grand Bahama Micro and Small Business Economic Empowerment and Entrepreneurial Incentive Program. From left to right are BTVI's: Entrepreneurial Workforce Prep instructor, Sherlock Prince; Head of Auto Mechanics, Kenton Roker, Ms. Bain; President, Dr. Robert W. Robertson and Associate Vice President of the Northern Campus, Veronica Collie. Read More
Education Minister Praises Commonwealth Bank, Stresses Role of Parents in Education
Education Minister Jeffrey Lloyd used a parenting forum to issue a public thank you to Commonwealth Bank for its "extraordinary" support to education and to tell parents that the role they play in their child's education cannot be overstated. Read More
Click Below for this week's weather in The Bahamas:
Upcoming Calendar
New Providence
Grand Bahama
  • September 15th, 2018

    • International Coastal Clean Up 8:00am - 10:00am at Discovery Bay
  • September 24th, 2018

    • Grand Bahama Chamber of Commerce Chamber Open House & Exhibit 11:00am - 4:00pm at The Conference Room
  • September 25th, 2018

    • The Ministry of Environment and Housing Town Hall Meetings 9:00am - 3:00pm at The Grand Bahama Chamber of Commerce
  • September 26th, 2018

    • Grand Bahama Chamber of Commerce Monthly Business Meeting 12:30pm at Delphine Room,Pelican Bay Hotel
  • September 28th, 2018

    • Local Farmers and Craft Market 9:00am - 1:00pm at The Rand Nature Centre
  • October 13th, 2018

    • Book Launch for S.L. Sheppard's The Left-over Daughters 6:00pm at Regency Theatre Foyer
Family Islands
  • September 26th, 2018 
    • Ali's Antique Car show at Governor's Harbour
  • September 26th, 2018 
    • Ali's Antique Car show at Governor's Harbour
  • September 29th, 2018 
    • Pap Smear & Breast Exam for Women and PSA Blood Testing & Digital Exam for Men at Long Island Clinics
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