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President of the Medical Association of Jamaica (MAJ), Dr Rosemarie Wright-Pascoe, has called on Jamaicans to play their part in reducing the number of trauma cases in the country.
“We ask you to drive carefully, we ask you to follow the rules…I call on all physicians here to arm yourselves with knowledge to make the outcome of those who have suffered trauma to be the best one possible,” she urged.
The MAJ President made the request at Thursday night’s opening ceremony of the Association’s annual symposium, being held this weekend at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel, New Kingston.
The symposium, which is being held under the theme,”The Impact of Trauma on the Health of the Nation,” started Friday (June 5) and will continue to Sunday (June 7), with 30 lectures, 5 workshops and a special lecture each night focussing on ‘Rehabilitation of an Injured Community’.
Dr. Wright-Pascoe said that this year’s theme is especially timely, in light of the toll trauma cases are taking on the country and on the health sector.
She pointed out that one in three scheduled surgeries at the Kingston Public Hospital (KPH) is cancelled, because the operating theatres are kept busy with emergency trauma cases, whether as a result of violence or motor vehicle accidents.
She said the cancellations are especially distressing for the patients who take time off from work and make the necessary arrangements, such as engaging someone to watch their children and preparing mentally for the surgery.
“Consider her frustration, consider the frustration of her family, consider the frustration of her employers who now will have to do this again and again and again,” she stated.
Mrs. Wright-Pascoe added that the effect of trauma on children is particularly distressing for the Association.
“Children losing fathers and mothers, mothers and fathers losing their sons and daughters, sons and daughters of Jamaica whose senses every day are assaulted by news of not one more dead, but multiple dead,” she lamented.