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Milton Cato Memorial Hospital on March 21, 2024.
Milton Cato Memorial Hospital on March 21, 2024.
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The Nurses Association of St Vincent and the Grenadines has called on the Minister of National Security, Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves to intervene after the shooting of a patient at the Milton Cato Memorial Hospital (MCMH) on Tuesday, saying the incident was not an isolated one. 

“We are thankful that no member of staff was hurt; however, while there was no physical injury, the incident has left the staff shaken and terrified,” the association said in a press statement on Thursday. 

The association said it is concerned with the safety and welfare of all nurses and other nursing personnel and “remain resolute in advocating for the safety and security of staff. 

“This act is not an isolated incident; over the years, multiple acts of crime and violence have saturated the Milton Cato Memorial Hospital, and we are aggrieved and dissatisfied with the authorities’ reactive approach. 

“We dismiss any attempt to implement temporary security measures and call on the Minister of National Security to intervene to ensure that nurses have a safe and conducive environment to provide optimal patient care continually. “

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The association said it was “deeply concerned about our nurses’ psychological state “and will provide the necessary support and assistance to ensure that the nurses involved get essential care and counselling. 

“The Nurses Association of St. Vincent and the Grenadines strongly condemns the recent spike in serious crimes and acts of violence that continue to plague our nation. 

“We are alarmed by the epidemic of crime and violence and call on the authorities to put measures in place to restore peace and stability within our society,” the association said. 

In separate statements on Wednesday, the Ministry of Health said it was reviewing security measures at the hospital.

In its first statement, the ministry said its psychosocial team had been activated and commenced the provision of support to the healthcare team and the patients at the MCMH. 

Then, on Wednesday afternoon the ministry announced restrictions to the visiting hours at the Male Surgical Ward of the MCMH.

The ministry said that visiting houses will be restricted to 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. only effective immediately until further notice.

The 11 a.m. to 12 noon visiting period has been suspended, the ministry said.

It further announced that each patient on the Male Surgical Ward at MCMH will only be allowed one bedside visitor during the visiting period.

“The name of this single visitor will be provided by each patient and must be on a list which will be kept at the security booth at the Kingstown District Clinic entrance to the MCMH,” the ministry said.

Connel Jack, 26, was shot while a patient at the Male Surgical Ward at MCMH.

Jack, a resident of Ottley Hall, was hospitalised in connection with two gunshot injuries he sustained in his community around 9 p.m. Sunday.

After the attack, he ran to the police substation in the village and the officer transported him to the MCMH, sources said. 

Jack was shot again in hospital about 12 hours after Camran Miller aka Boogie was shot in the head and killed in Ottley Hall.

Miller’s death brings the 2024 homicide count in St. Vincent and the Grenadines to eight.

3 replies on “Nurses group calls on National Security Minister to intervene after hospital shooting ”

  1. nancysauldemers says:

    If I understand the situation at the Milton Cato Memorial Hospital correctly, the nurses and the patients themselves are very highly reliant on the care and assistance provided by patients’ visitors. How will patient care (and, ultimately, health care outcomes) be impacted if visiting hours are decreased?

  2. Are we serious about security? Reducing visiting hours and allowing only one person is a serious security measure? Who is the clown that suggested this as a security measure? This is truly an “ah soul” country.

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