– electrical problem, staff shortage affecting servicesMedical services at the Kumaka District Hospital, Region One (Barima-Waini), are in jeopardy with several issues affecting the performance of staff there and the quality of treatment and testing that patients can access.The medical worker, Nurse La Rose, highlighting the woes plaguing the Kumaka District Hospital, Region OnePresently, the hospital’s mortuary is in dire need of a working refrigerator since the present one has malfunctioned.In addition to this, since 2015, the X-ray department has not been able to cater to the needs of persons seeking such services and this has caused heavy financial burdens on patients who have to travel to the hospital in Suddie, Region Two (Pomeroon-Supenaam) to conduct X-rays and ultrasounds.These issues were pointed out to health officials earlier this week by one of the hospital’s staff, Nurse La Rose, who spent 10 years working in Region One. She pleaded with Health Minister Volda Lawrence to rectify these shortcomings as soon as possible.“It’s hard for us. Nevertheless, we are trying. The X-ray department there, since 2015 because of some fault with the contract…he started the project, he never responded, after a certain time, the contract was terminated. We have a new brand X-ray machine in there, never used, but because according to the engineer it is the fault with the leading of the room. Also, we have an electrical problem in the hospital.”La Rose pointed out that Public Infrastructure Minister, David Patterson had been in that area and she had explained the electrical issues to him. Although he had a technician assess the situation, to date, nothing has been done to rectify it, she noted.“We are asking if our X-ray department can be up and running. We have a technician here, we had several of them trained. However, we still have one here and we just use him all around because the department is not running…It is very expensive for patients to go to Suddie for an ultrasound…boat fare, transportation and probably overnight, high-risk clinic is very large and very costly for patients to go there to access ultrasound, X-ray and so on.”She elaborated that more services need to be provided for females, especially pregnant females, and that the absence of a gynaecologist in-house is a major disadvantage for the community.“I am asking if we could have a gynaecologist at least once a month…most of our patients are high risk and they have to go to Suddie…on a monthly basis, a gynaecologist right here would be better for our patients and as a result we would save on our resources too…because we use our health boat to transport back and forth or maybe one side of travelling.”Additionally, La Rose lamented the fact that the Kumaka District Hospital is grossly understaffed, and that although health workers stationed at the facility struggle to execute their duties on a daily basis, authorities should work on deploying more human resources at that health facility to ease the burdens.“…the employment rate has been slow. We have no statistical clerk, we have no receptionist, we have one ward maid at the moment, one cook, our ancillary staff is struggling. Everyone here pitches in from time to time to keep the hospital clean because it is overwhelming on one person. Even more so, for the nursing staff, we are short, because people train, they come back, when their contract is finished, they go and leave that space, most of the persons have done so,” she added.