No tissue, no problem?
A short video highlighting the plight of a patient, apparently from the USA, who was asking for tissue in a public hospital in Jamaica, has been circulating on social media.
While it is well known that patients are responsible for personal care supplies, the basics, such as tissue, should be provided. Hospitals and medical facilities are based on hygiene and sanitation. We can’t boast about soaring visitor arrivals when hospitals cannot provide basic supplies to patients in need, which may include visitors. The nurse in the video told the patient, “This is not America!” I wanted to laugh but couldn’t.
As funny as the clip was, it is also sad as it highlights the state of public health care. I’ve heard of patients having to buy needles for injection; I’ve also heard of doctors going into their own pockets to buy supplies.
Health care is the basis for development, and a minor issue such as lack of tissue paper speaks to a much bigger problem which must be addressed. And the reputation of these hospitals aren’t good to begin with.
We don’t understand that it is the little things that matter most. These days social media allows us to zero in on these problems and magnify them. We must constantly ask ourselves: How can we make things better? How can we improve basic services?
Most problems are not complex, yet we allow them to manifest into bigger issues which ultimately become a national embarrassment.