Their Excellencies Governor-General, the Most Hon. Sir Patrick Allen, and Lady Allen brought Christmas cheer to the patients and staff of the Bustamante Hospital for Children on Monday (December 13) during a visit to the facility.
Their Excellencies handed out gifts to the children and interacted with them and the hospital staff. Sir Patrick expressed pleasure at being able to visit, noting that the Bustamante Hospital has become part of the extended family of King’s House. “Lady Allen visits and reads to the children every Monday,” he said.
Governor General, His Excellency the Most Hon. Sir Patrick Allen (left), speaks to a patient at the Bustamante Hospital for Children, during a tour of the facility on Monday (Dec. 13). Looking on is Custos Rotulorum of St. Andrew, Hon. Marigold Harding.
He noted that hospital stays can be a lonely experience for patients and even more so for children. “As children recover in hospital, it is important that they are visited by family and friends, as it helps them to remember that someone cares and can even make the healing process appear shorter,” Sir Patrick stated.
The Governor-General said he was pleased with the hospital’s holistic approach to health care delivery and commended the doctors and hospital staff.
“Today, I recognise the great service given by the staff to this institution and the nation especially to those who are helpless, vulnerable and defenceless. It speaks volumes to the goodness in you and your selfless spirit in sharing the gifts and talents with which you are bestowed,” Sir Patrick said.
Chairman of the South Eastern Regional Health Authority, Lyttleton Shirley, said he was pleased that Their Excellencies “saw it fit” to bring cheer to the children of the facility.
Governor General, His Excellency the Most Hon. Sir Patrick Allen (right) is about to presents a game of chess to a patient at the Bustamante Hospital for Children, while Her Excellency Lady Allen and a nurse look on. Their Excellencies toured the facility on Monday (Dec. 13) as part of their annual Christmas visits to hospitals across the island.
“Your presence here today signals your commitment to caring for and brightening the spirits of the children of this facility. Lady Allen, we know that in your own way you have been making a significant contribution to this hospital each week. You have been diligently and consistently visiting the children at this facility reading to them and providing assistance in any way you can without any fanfare or public recognition,” Mr. Shirley said.
Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Beverly Needham, informed that for the first nine months of this year, 56,687 patients were seen in the accident and emergency department and 8,510 patients were admitted to hospital. Last year, 83,282 patients were seen in the accident and emergency section, 41,044 were seen in the outpatient department, and 11,567 were admitted to the institution.
The CEO said she hoped that the Governor-General and his wife will continue to support the institution in the future.
“We hope that in 2011 you will continue to lend your support. Your Excellencies, on behalf of the Bustamante Hospital for Children family, we would like to say thank you for the work you continue to do for Jamaica and to take this opportunity to wish you a safe and holy season,” Mrs. Needham said.
Their Excellencies visit to the Bustamante Hospital is the first stop on a tour of four hospitals for the season, to bring Christmas cheer to patients and staff.