The Military Sealift Command hospital ship ‘USNS’ Comfort will from September 15 dock in Grenada for five days as United States medical personnel provide Grenadians with medical assistance in the areas of ophthalmology, general surgery, urology, orthopaedic surgery, oral maxillofacial surgery, plastic surgery and wound care.
Minister of Health Nickolas Steele appeared at this week’s post-cabinet briefing accompanied by Senior Medical Officer in the Ministry of Health, Dr Francis Martin and the US Ambassador to Barbados, the Eastern Caribbean and the OECS Ms Linda Swartz- Taglialatela. They spoke of the services the US medical personnel would be providing and the procedure that must be followed by persons wishing to access those services. Medical services will be provided by doctors and specialists that will arrive on the ship, from the 15th -20th September.
Ambassador Taglialatela explained that service from the doctors who come aboard the US Naval Ship will be on a first come first serve basis. She said part of the mission is for the doctors to share whatever expertise they can to help Grenada. “The focus is on the relationship between Grenada and the United States, which they have built over a long period of time and they will be sharing their expertise with the Grenadians.
She said they have asked several doctors through the local Ministry of Health to help and to participate alongside the American doctors. This she reasoned will be a learning experience; sharing of knowledge and information between the two sets of doctors as well as helping the citizens of Grenada.
The medical ship is on a five-month tour, going to many different countries to extend their medical services to the people in the clinics.
Dr Francis Martin outlined that the USNS Comfort will be offering problem-based services in seven broad categories of services, a person does not necessarily need a referral to obtain the services of the ship, but if one does have a referral it will make it easier for the doctors to navigate the patient thoroughly.
Minister Steele said he knows that the visit of the Naval Ship to Grenada is something that many Grenadians look forward and hopes that many Grenadians get the opportunity to access the services offered during the five days they will be on the island to offer their services to Grenadians.
The doctors will be operating from the Kirani James Stadium and the Grenada Trade Center to accommodate persons from different parts of the island.