One week after it was announced that the medical intern who lied about being robbed at the Port-of-Spain General Hospital (PoSGH) had been fired, Health Minister Terrence Deyalsingh says she will be given a chance to salvage her career.
However, before this can be done, the young woman will have to satisfy certain conditions laid down by the employer.
, Deyalsingh said, "While she is no longer employed by the North West Regional Health Authority (NWRHA), she has been given six months to produce documentary evidence that she is fit and proper to resume duties."
Deyalsingh stressed the decision was based on humane considerations.
He went on to explain, "We are not throwing away this young individual because the country has invested millions via Gate and training to bring this intern up to the level that she is.
," the minister said.
The woman claimed that on October 23 she had been robbed on the compound of the PoSGH.
This prompted her colleagues at the facility to embark on industrial action by withholding services in the light of general security concerns.
Following the incident, Deyalsingh admitted there were general safety and security issues which needed to be addressed.
Focusing on this, Deyalsingh said while the ball had been firmly placed in the hands of the NWRHA's chief executive officer Sheldon Cyrus, he admitted to engaging in some unorthodox behaviour in order to highlight the inefficiencies in the current security systems at both the PoSGH and the St James Infirmary.
, in order to get a first-hand view of the shortcomings in the security system.
He was "appalled at what passes for security." Deyalsingh said, "In one row of lights, there were seven blown bulbs."
Stressing that it was a simple security measure to ensure they were changed in a timely manner, Deyalsingh said he had also spoken to nurses who claimed to have lost their car batteries while their vehicles were parked on the compound.
However, the minister expressed outrage over what he deemed a serious security breach at the Accident & Emergency Department (A&E).
Recalling the jail-break of last year July which left one policeman dead, Deyalsingh said the PoSGH had been a focal point at the time.
Expecting that last year's events would have encouraged hospital officials to tighten security operations, Deyalsingh said he was surprised to find the electronic gate at the A&E ajar when he entered the department.
He said the security guard at the time had been mingling with members of the public, leaving his post unmanned.
Claiming this was an even greater risk to patients and staff, the minister said it would have been easy for him, in the role of a bandit, to penetrate deep into the department and commit a crime.