Health, Local news, News

Follow the Data – Byron-Nisbett

Published 16 November 2022


Buckie Got It, St Kitts and Nevis News Source


Former Health Minister Akilah Bryon-Nisbett isn’t anxious about the government’s recent transfer of doctors from Joseph N France (JNF) General Hospital to the Pogson institution in Sandy Point.

“I think first you would have need to follow the data and see how many patients you have coming through Pogson at any given time and then determine if it’s absolutely necessary to have doctors full time,” she explained to in a recent exclusive.

Byron-Nisbett said she is “a bit concerned to see if JNF is getting the support that is necessary to deal with the cases that comes through the hospital, and if the resources that would have been put into Pogson is necessary at this time.”

With changes in political administration there are expected shifts in administrative staff at government-run institutions, and the former minister accepts that each will want a management team it is comfortable with.

But the move by Prime Minister, Dr Terrance Drew, who is also St Kitts and Nevis Health Minister, is a bit suspect to Byron-Nisbett who reiterated such momentous moves should be data-driven.

“I have not heard about anything major happen, I know that they have made some changes in that they have moved some of the doctors from JNF to Pogson (hospital) in Sandy Point. My only concern is that I am hopeful that when they are making these decisions, they are following the data to determine what is best.”

“From my knowledge of it, JNF is overwhelmed and we didn’t even have enough doctors to do what was needed and necessary. To move doctors to Pogson that didn’t really have that much activity to begin with we will just have to wait and see how that plays out,” Bryon-Nisbett cautioned.

The transfer of specialists from one health institution to another can either enhance or trigger deterioration in a country’s health sector, the former minister reminded, calling for an audit of services at Pogson is adequate considering existing and/or anticipated.

“You have to look at what services are being provided at Pogson versus JNF…because you don’t have all of the services at (the former). One of the first things that could have been done was to determine what other services we can offer at Pogson to of some strain from JNF.”

Arguing for the audit, she insisted that in isolation, transferring doctors is insufficient.

“If you add doctors alone and don’t have the required services then they will still have to provide doctors who can assist…JNF which still has to admit a lot of cases.”

“That is something that I look at and am not sure they followed the data to really understand if that was the move needed at that time, or if there was something else that should have been put in place before making that move,” Bryon-Nisbett said, reflecting. 

Former Health Minister Akilah Bryon-Nisbett

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