MP Lewis on Health Focus

MEDICAL DONATION—Member of Parliament for Central Grand Bahama Iram Lewis displayed a number of hospital gowns, wheelchairs and medical instruments, earmarked for the Rand Memorial Hospital as part of the Central Grand Bahama Wellness Mission.  Pictured from left are Medical technician Marcus Garvey, Administrator for West GB Christian Palacious, Lewis, Senator Jasmine Darius, Urban Renewal deputy director and Ricardo Adderley, partner. (PHOTO: JENNEVA RUSSELL)

One of the island’s noted politicians is focusing on a health care initiative.

In an effort to improve the lives of residents here on the island of Grand Bahama, with respect to receiving optimum medical care, Member of Parliament for Central Grand Bahama, Iram Lewis, announced on Friday, February 8, the launch of his program entitled ‘Central Grand Bahama’s Wellness Mission’ which he informed will be geared towards assisting residents throughout the island regarding required medical supplies and services.

Lewis provided the motive and details.

“As the Member of Parliament for Central Grand Bahama I want to announce the Central Grand Bahama’s Wellness Mission. We understand the importance of health and oftentimes we hear the slogan, ‘The health of the nation is the wealth of the nation.’ We have formed a committee and have been getting supplies and equipment as well as services, to render support to our local health facilities as well as some of our nursing homes.

“As a part of this initiative, we have acquired through partnerships, goods and supplies to give to the Rand Memorial Hospital, initially, as well as to Urban Renewal, and senior assisted living facilities in Grand Bahama.

“We have secured quite a number of wheelchairs. We have two here with us today and about 10 more coming. We also have hospital beds on the way, isolation garments, disposable blankets pillow cases and sheets that will be formally given to the Rand Memorial Hospital.

“The initiative is something that we have been working hard on. We understand the importance of medical support because often, persons go to the hospital and there is a shortage of beds. I had a personal experience where a relative was taken to the hospital and when we got there, there were no wheelchairs, or gurneys available and when we finally got the person inside, there was not a bed available. Again, we are covering wheelchairs and beds. This will not solve all of the problems, but we are going to do our best to assist with the medical facilities, as well as the nursing homes on the island of Grand Bahama.

“As not to be selfish, I am the Member of Parliament for Central Grand Bahama, but I want to help the entire island of Grand Bahama and by giving it (donations) to the hospital, we will be covering East Grand Bahama, Pineridge, Marco City, Central Grand Bahama and West Grand Bahama. It is our intention to embrace and include all of the other players to ensure that we cover our entire island.

“We are also partnering with Marcus Garvey, who has expertise in first response as well as basic medical care. I am happy to announce that we have secured overseas two more ambulances. We have one on the island now and we have two more. We will make the announcement upon their arrival. Marcus will be operating to assist with pick-up and drop off at the hospital as well as offering services to The Kidney Center,” informed Lewis.

The MP said the project will be dealt with in a serious manner, utilizing all avenues to heighten “the initiative.”

“We are taking this initiative very seriously, understanding that a lot of families are under pressure when it comes to health care services, our hospital and the facilities and supplies. It (health car service) is pretty much overburdened. We are going to see how best we can assist, as much as possible to make it a bit easier on the patients and to see how we can eventually get into the area of preventing some of these medical illnesses that we are so unfortunately faced with in Grand Bahama.

“I have spoken to the Minister of Health (and he welcomed the initiative) to partner with The Ministry of Health. We are happy to have Marcus on board and we see this as something that is going to be very impactful on the entire island of Grand Bahama, from east to west. We will be out there soliciting goods and the services will be provided by Marcus, who will be training additional specialists to assist him in this effort.

“We also have a quite a bit of supplies in our storeroom, close to about $20,000 worth of goods right now,” detailed MP Lewis.

He added that the additionally ambulances en route to the island are modern equipment, in good working order and will be suitable and of assistance to the medical facilities here on the island of Grand Bahama.

Marcus Garvey, Certified Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) expressed his commitment to the mission.

Attached to the Rand Memorial Hospital’s Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Department for well over 30 years, Garvey brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to the CGB Wellness Mission.

“I am now retired and on my own and I am also assisting with the Wellness Mission. I am running a business now, which has not been launched as yet. However, I recently started, in December, taking persons to and from The Kidney Center, offering door to door services which Executive Medical Transport (EMT) and First Response Ambulance Services.

“I am getting a lot of feedback from families who appreciate these things, and also wheelchairs, and all of the equipment that we have for donations…various things that the hospital needs.

“We should have other things such as additional beds, heart monitors and other things that are really needed at the hospital. This is just a good gesture to pass onto the hospital knowing that that medical facility has the needs. This is something that we are doing together,” concluded Garvey.

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