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Kingston Gleaner Newspaper Archives May 2 2015, Page 1

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Kingston Gleaner (Newspaper) - May 2, 2015, Kingston, KingstonVOLUME 181 NO. 104 KINGSTON, JAMAICA 40 PAGESwww.jamaica-gleaner.com INCLUDING GCT $60 Follow us on: SATURDAY, MAY 2, 2015 FR& IT’S A NEW DAY!TURN TO SECTION C Gary Spaulding Senior Gleaner Writer PRESIDENT OF the JamaicaMedical Doctors’ Association(JMDA) Dr Alfred Dawes has charged that medical doctors are being given ‘scandal bags’ instead of surgical aprons to do their work in operating theatres in the ailing public-health system that is pleading for much-needed attention. And if that were not enough, Dawes charged that operating theatres are anything but sterile in an environment that is teeming with fungi. In a PowerPoint presentation at a press conference yesterday, Dawes showed images to corroborate con- cerns highlighted by doctors. He said that in the absence of standard med- ical masks, doctors have had no option but to use Ebola masks that they have been given to do their work. He charged that there were no med- ical tubes to drain blood, pointing to makeshift ones in what he described as a dysfunctional supply chain in the public system. Dawes said that the sad state of affairs at public-health facilities is compounded by the constant opening of doors to the operating theatres, which should be closed to prevent foreign matter from entering. Then there is the absence of slit lamps (an instrument consisting of a high-intensity light source) or the presence of malfunc- tioning theatre lights. In the midst of the medical calamity gripping the public- health system, Dawes lamented that doctors are called to work in a flawed shift system. He urged Health Minister Dr Fenton Ferguson to take strong action against Permanent Secretary Dr Kevin Harvey for misleading the nation in his defence of the shift system. BLAME PERMANENT SECRETARY Listing some of the deficiencies that have marred health care at public facilities, Dawes said that infection control was sorely lacking as anti-bac- terial soaps are cut in half. In launching a bruising onslaught on Harvey, the JMDA president painted a graphic picture of the plight of the public-health sector. Dawes said that the JMDA has pulled out of all talks with Harvey, including Task Force activities, until Ferguson initiates a probe into the permanent secretary’s conduct. Dawes accused Harvey of willfully misleading the nation and suggested that the unpreparedness of the ministry in relation to the chikungunya outbreak and Ebola threat may not be that of Ferguson. Declaring that the public-health sector was in a crisis of mammoth proportions, Dawes complained that instead of seeking to address the maladies, the JMDA was being vilified. After highlighting the gamut of symptoms to prove that the health ministry was in dire straits, Dawes’s prognosis was that the operations of the ministry were, at best, lacklustre and suggested that regional health authorities were malfunctional. He said that the notion of employing Hospital scandal! Doctors use plastic bags as aprons in operating theatres Jamaica now casino ready Regulations passed to send signal Daraine Luton Senior Staff Reporter THE MOVEMENT towards having casino gaming a part of the Jamaican landscape took another major step yes- terday with the passage of two pieces of regulation in the Senate. Justice Minister Senator Mark Golding said the regulations would sig- nal to the approved developers that the Casino Gaming Commission is ready to receive applications for casino gam- ing licences. “These regulations will enable a prospective developer of an approved integrated resort to commence the nec- essary financial and other business arrangements in connection with the development,” Golding said as he pilot- ed the regulations through the Senate. The two pieces of regulation passed are the Casino Gaming (Annual Licence Fees for Casino Gaming Licences and Personal Licences) Regulation 2015, and the Casino Gaming (Application Related to Licences) Regulation 2015. The regulations have already been approved by the House of Representatives. The Ministry of Finance and Planning in June 2013 invited investors to apply for orders to become approved integrated resort developers. Golding said that in response, five applications were received, two of which were deemed suitable for further evaluation. The evaluation of these applications is now at an advanced stage. LICENSING FEES The initial annual licence fee to be paid upon the grant of a licence by the Commission is US$250,000, plus US$50,000 multiplied by the maximum number of table games approved by the Commission for deployment in the casino. The annual licence fee payable thereafter will be US$250,000, plus US$1,000 multiplied by the maximum number of table games approved. The fees are fixed based on what Golding said is the commission’s assess- ment of the market, the desire being to make the investment attractive while at the same time seeking to get revenues. Casino operators applying for contin- uation of a licence must satisfy the commission that they are fit and proper persons to be concerned in or associated with the management or operation of the casino. Application for the continuation of a casino gaming licence or a temporary casino gaming licence shall be accom- panied by a non-refundable fee of US$50,000 or the equivalent in Jamaican currency. The regulations further state that the commission shall charge an applicant for a personal licence, a fee on account of reimbursement of expenses reasonably incurred by the commission in conduct of due diligence investigation. Such fee, however, cannot exceed US$4,000. daraine.luton@gleanerjm.com FILE Justice Minister Senator Mark Golding PLEASE SEE BAGS, A2 NORMAN GRINDLEY/CHIEF PHOTOGRAPHER Dr Alfred Dawes, president of the Jamaica Medical Doctors’ Association. A5 A2: HARVEY SURPRISED AT JMDA’S WITHDRAWAL

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