UPDATE: DNA delegation seeks meeting with Ministry of Health

Nurses seeking to meet with Ministry of Health officials to air their grievances

President of the Dominica Nurses Association (DNA), Nurse Rosie Felix says they are “tired, frustrated and fed up” with shabby working conditions under which nurses on the island have to operate and the situation needs to be urgently addressed.

Nurse Felix, along with some members of the DNA, attempted to meet with Health Minister Kenneth Darroux and the Permanent Secretary in the ministry of health, on Monday March 25, 2019, but to no avail.

“We are trying to get the attention of the government and the ministry of health with long outstanding issues. Nurses are leaving in droves; the conditions at which nurses work are bad,” Felix stated.

She continued, “At the Psychiatric Unit, the area is being refurbished in the presence of the nurses and the male patients. Nurses have to wear masks. Three nurses are now on sick leave from the Marigot Health Centre and the place is closed because of mold. In Scotts Head, a nurse just returned from sick leave again because of mold infestation.”

According to Felix, “There are nurses who are operating from their private vehicles giving primary health care. The Mahaut Health Centre is still under tarpaulin. The Vieille Case Health Centre has windows and doors still boarded up.”

She said in Portsmouth, security is still an issue, while in Castle Bruce “the place is cramped and nowhere for the nurses to stay when they are on call. Generally, we are unhappy and dissatisfied with the conditions at which we, as nurses, have to work.”

“We attempted to speak to the PS and the Minister who is out, but the PS, also a nurse, said she is too busy to speak with me. The Ministry needs to meet our union, the Dominica Public Service Union (DPSU),” Felix stated.

Felix told DNO during an interview, “Members of our (DNA) executive are being victimized because they are on the executive. The moral of nurses is just low. At the casualty department, we are being threatened with knives by members of the general public. We are frustrated, nurses and doctors are leaving because of the conditions that we work under.”

She said further, “Our minister of health is a medical doctor and one would have thought that he would be advocating for us, but that is not the case. We are fed up, frustrated and tired of that, and need action. Remember, whatever is affecting nurses is also affecting the general public.”

Felix said that the nurses are demanding that they be provided with positive practice environments as promoted by the International Centre for Human resources in Nursing (ICHRN).

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    March 26, 2019

    Nurse Rosie Felix, I sympathize with you and understand your concern but you cannot say nothing is done to assist you nurses. You know for yourself what has been done. All your demands cannot be met all at one time but they will be met; but you see now, your action is pure political. Are you trying to score some political points for your party? Most of those there are affiliated to the opposition party. Are those the only nurses on island?

  2. teacher.
    March 25, 2019

    We love our nurses and stand with them. better salary and better treatment when workers win.

  3. Self
    March 25, 2019

    The minister of health turn blue, He say if de thing take him he just going up for workers.

  4. true islander
    March 25, 2019

    election mimic. the way you all do this protest symbolizes election papishow. thou i aggree wth some of what you are going thru please protest properly where the whole staff of nurses protest for better condition. the president is trying to gain popularity for her party

  5. jahsmallJ
    March 25, 2019

    I support the nurses. We cannot neglect the people that take care of our sick. Even we ourselves might end up under their care. We giving attention to village council buildings over health care centers. Still paying poor wages to our nurses. No security or transportation to and from the hospital. Enough is enough, tomorrow starts today. Give the nurses what they deserve.

  6. Ibo France
    March 25, 2019

    Nurses are indispensable, they take care of us from birth till our last breath. Anything to do that will bring relief to conscientious civil servants, this administration stubbornly refuses to give them a fair deal. Most of their Permanent Secretaries act as their hatchet men and women. The instructions to frustrate come directly from the Ministers. There should be a general strike by all unionized and non-unionized civil servants to bring the government to the bargaining table. Pressure forces water uphill. These ruling degenerates have visited mostly anguish, long suffering and insufferable agony on the lives of Dominicans. Through the EXIT DOOR they have to go next general election.

  7. Bob Denis
    March 25, 2019

    The Nurses seems to be the face of this struggle , but Women in lower conditions continue to face hell . All Women , regardless of their position ,should show solidarity , female police and Lawyers included . Make no bones about it , Nations are Judged by the way their Women are treated . Don’t be mis-led .

  8. March 25, 2019

    Exercise your right, stop working and wait until the UWP gets into office, move to greener pastures like the US, UK or Canada. Or better still build your own hospital and give yourself all the benefits you need.

    • free
      March 25, 2019

      Time for change. This Government does not care. All NURSES should have walked out today

    • Bakes
      March 26, 2019

      Longtime to wait

  9. Standinthegap
    March 25, 2019

    I applaud these nurses who showed up in solidarity for their cause. I understand who feels it knows it. I have never seen public servants operate in any building than what is provided for them yet, I see nurses operate from their personal vehicles to gives care all because the buildings have mold which makes them sick. Like I said, who feels it knows it. I agree some nurses have attitude but who wouldn’t have attitude when you’re underpaid, don’t get paid, work under unhealthy conditions…nurses don’t get paid for that cap and the public wants them to pretend like all is well. They are human beings and not robots. As far as I can see in these pics…these are nurse’s who go the extra mile for their patients. The wealth of the nation is in your hands. Fight for it self. No wonder England takin all our nurses. Buck up! I’m tired of hearing these nurses fight for the same cause over and over again. Allu lucky I does not wear white

    • March 26, 2019

      Wow. Not good at all.

  10. Ibo France
    March 25, 2019

    Imagine that! These hardworking, selfless and dedicated civil servants (our nurses) have to literally bare their souls to try to convene a meeting with their government Minister and his PS. This is most unfortunate as they have been crying out for much too long about their salaries, the deplorable working conditions and the ill-treatment meted out to them. Everybody is crying foul with this clueless Skerrit-led mismanagement. The nurses, the port workers, customs officers, the police, the farmers and most public sector employees are at their wits end with this uncaring regime. Can all these different groups of workers be so wrong or just playing politics? The Sherri-ill-administration has severely fragmented the society and cheapened public life.

  11. Karl Orndem
    March 25, 2019

    Keep it up. Charles Savarin had used the nurses and other public servants to aggitage the government during times of Patrick John. USe the cry public servants as your weapons to challenge the government when need be.

  12. caraw
    March 25, 2019

    Are these the only nurses that are working in poor conditions? Are they scared of getting their names called in the house of assembly? What a shame that a recent former nurse, will not meet with her colleagues to talk about their problems. Pride goeth before a fall.

    • Lol
      March 25, 2019

      they are not scared they are just not being used by someone with a political agenda.

      • Nurse
        March 25, 2019

        O shut up with your political agenda. Some are scared but we will not stop we will continue to protest till something happens.

      • Hello
        March 25, 2019

        IF there is a political agenda and its for the benefit of the nurses, THEN let it be. There is politics all over, in all we do, so let us look for the good which may come from it. Having said this more nurses should be at this gathering to send a stronger message.

  13. Ernie
    March 25, 2019

    That Hospital BedSheet sign got me rotfl

  14. Family of a nurse
    March 25, 2019

    Them nurses do damn right. Good for none of them to go work . Nonesense that. Treat our nurses with more respect and better conditions. they deserve better.

  15. ??
    March 25, 2019

    I guess that’s the UWP cabal at the PMH. These are the ones who put out misleading info about the hospital not have supplies when they fail to reorder. Too many of these nurses need to find another job based on my experience. At the same time there are many who deserve all the praises they can get. It’s obvious that this is a political move.

    • Braindamage
      March 25, 2019

      It’s a political move because your envelope of cash is sure every Wednesdays and saffer other people.
      Time is approaching for Skerrit and his flocks to leave…..

  16. Henry
    March 25, 2019

    Yes stand for all u rights in thay country .. that dictatorship has to end once and for all.. call the bloody election skerite for we the people to put you and your criminal gang where you all belong!

  17. LaPlaine Observer
    March 25, 2019

    For years these nurses have been working under unfavorable conditions and the PS won’t even meet with the nurses to discuss their concerns? This is irresponsible when the government refuses to meet with our health care professionals to address the deficiencies in the system.

  18. BIGGS
    March 25, 2019

    Hold the banner tight my sister from Bense.

  19. %
    March 25, 2019

    This is a crying shame..So why are the nurses neglected in the entire scheme of things?.When will the health of the nation be taken seriously?? So the millions of $$$$$$$$$ floating in all the constituencies, are just to buy votes????
    Nurses the power is in your hands .
    Vote them out!
    Vote the Wickeds out!!
    I know the Minister of Health was discarded, but Skerrit is the government..So vote against his candidate in your constituencies!
    Oops On the banner benefits not beni….!
    Skerrit Must Go
    Skerrit Must Go
    LAZY Skerrit Must Go Now

    • Love
      March 25, 2019

      % get a LIFE. On a daily basis you just seat by to let out your biggest bark. Like a street Dog, just waiting for a passerby to drop a bone, to either bark on jump on it, So is your behavior %. One of your favorite subject is the young people, take the opportunity to be a role model to them.

  20. Next PM
    March 25, 2019

    Nurses talk of bullying, yet bullying is a common practice within their ranks, at all levels. RNs bully NAs, ward aids , cleaners. NAs bully those below them. Those at the hospital bully those from the out districts. Ask nurses about the attitudes they get from those at the hospital when they come down with patients from the out districts. anyway why do those in uniforms think they are more special than other public servants?

    • carlty
      March 25, 2019

      Believe me, I understand what you are saying. I agree that the conditions (of the facility) need to be made better not just for nurses but the health sector in general (which I see works are ongoing to remedy this and there is a proposed date hence I ask why they are protesting it, if nothing was done I would understand but steps are being taken to solve this. Let us place focus on customer service that will match the new facility because this is one of our biggest issue in the health sector. I cannot complain because I have often received great care and service (I must admit because I am well known) but I hear of and see how others are treated which I do not approve of.

    • Class
      March 25, 2019

      I think health care should be privatized..it would give a better sense of health and business in Dominica an the Caribbean by extension…..

    • sussie
      March 25, 2019

      whoever you are,. you seem to have something against us nurses.. What goes around comes around!

      • John bennet
        March 25, 2019

        I see some retired nurses lending support but again they are Affiliated to the opposition I truly hope it’s not Political.

    • roseaulove2019
      March 25, 2019

      Bullying is always wrong. I did not see you mention Nurses being bullied by the Minister of Health and higher authorities. I hope it was not a deliberate omission. Blessings to the Nurses and all of us who are not as privileged as some to fly to other countries for emergency care. Health Care is a right….not a Privilege.

    • White coat
      March 25, 2019

      No one thinks they are better than other public servants. Without teachers where would nurses be? Anyways on a more important note. Everywhere has bullying. And is not all that bully, RN bullying NA? Some whom bullying the RN’s? Supervisors. PPl sit on Outside sit and watch nurses on the inside and thinking the work easy and nurses don’t do work. Have anyone watched the amount of work nurses do for the little amount money they receive? When you go to work at 8pm and cannot take a rest because of numerous admissions at all hours of night into early morning. The amount of patients to bathe in morning. Emergency surgeries at anytime? It should have come be a nurse for a shift. And then outside persons would understand how demanding the job is and how mess up the system is.

  21. LifeandDeath
    March 25, 2019

    Support to the Nurses who took courage to come out and stand up for their rights. This isn’t about Politics per se, it’s more about standing up for quality Health services for Dominicans themselves.
    The small numbers is telling on the state of fear that permeates throughout all the institutions in Dominica..Many more will find the courage to come forward.

    • caraw
      March 25, 2019

      Fear rules throughout. Dominicans have to look around before they talk!

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