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Oct 23, 2018

Southern Regional Hospital Comes Under Intense Public Scrutiny for Increased Patient Mortality

The recent deaths of a young mother and a town council employee at the Southern Regional Hospital have brought grief to the families. It has also sparked a protest amid claims that negligence on behalf of the hospital resulted in the loss of lives. We start with the demise of twenty-two-year-old Jayeisha Parchue. Parchue was released from the hospital, readmitted and taken off an oxygen machine when she died.  Her family believes that the indecision on whether to undergo surgery led to her death. News Five’s Isani Cayetano reports.


Isani Cayetano, Reporting

Twenty-year-old Jayeisha Parchue, a first-time mother, passed away on the morning of October seventh at the Southern Regional Hospital.  Her shocking death while in the care of nurses and doctors at the medical facility, has left residents of Dangriga, including her boyfriend, stunned.  The young couple was looking forward to a bright future raising their newborn together, and then the unthinkable happened.


Jayeisha Parchue

Tyrone Hernandez, Boyfriend of Deceased

“To be honest sir, ih rough, ih really rough cause, like me and the mother, we plan a lot together, a lot, lotta things, like fi di Nineteenth celebration and Christmas, our son birthday coming up next year.  We had a lot planned and now, ih really hard.”


Those intentions for time to be spent together as a young family have since been dashed.  It all began with Jayeisha complaining of discomfort in her abdomen.


Tyrone Hernandez

Tyrone Hernandez

“From like the week, eena di week, she always di complain to me dat she had a bad feeling een ya fi ahn and I tell ahn, well mek she go da hospital.  So she seh mek I babysit so I end up di babysit and she gaan da hospital from di Monday.  So when she gaan from di Monday she come home and when she come, I ask ahn if she find out weh happen to ahn and she seh no, di doctor tell ahn ‘til Friday.”


The acute stomach pain persisted during the ensuing days and when Marsha Romero returned home from work that Friday, she was made aware of her daughter’s condition.


Voice of: Marsha Romero, Mother of Deceased

“I took her to the hospital about 12:30 Friday.  She went to the ER, they gave her drips and they sent her back home.  She was okay, she didn’t have any pain, she said.  The night, about six-thirty or seven o’clock, we went back again with the same problem, this time they gave her an injection.  They sent her back home again.  She passed the night like that and she get up Saturday morning feeling ill again, so I took her back again to the ER.  The said Saturday, they admitted her about, I think it was about two o’clock, they admitted her saying she had gastritis.  One of the nurse at the ER said that the young lady needed an ultrasound, but that didn’t happen.  The doctor came and spoke to me later in the evening, saying that they’re gonna take an x-ray from her to see what’s wrong in her stomach.  She came back and she told me, she said uhm, well she showed me the x-ray, a little dark spot on the x-ray saying that it was something like a boil that is squeezing her intestine.”


The following morning, Romero was visited by a doctor on duty at the Southern Regional Hospital and was informed that Jayeisha needed to undergo a medical procedure.  That information subsequently led to confusion among other members of staff.


Voice of: Marsha Romero

“On Sunday morning, the doctor came about 8:30 or 9:00, he came and he examined her and he said, “Ma’am, your daughter does not belong in here, she belongs in surgical ward and she’s gonna get surgery.  As soon as the surgeon comes in, she’s going to get surgery.  They told me I have to go down to the surgical ward and drop our things down there.  I went down there, dropped off our stuff and by the time I came back up, the surgeon was in the room.  One doctor saying, no she doesn’t need to be cut, that it’s gastritis.  They had a slight commotion there amongst themselves, discussing about this problem with my child.  So they said, no she’s not going to get surgery so they asked me again to pick up my stuff from the surgical ward, back again to the female medical ward.”


The indecisiveness among the doctors to determine a course of action will be challenged as a case of negligence and malpractice.  Romero describes how her daughter subsequently lost her life when medical practitioners could not decide on where and what to treat Jayeisha for.


Voice of: Marsha Romero

“The first one came back and he said, “Mommy, I am sending your daughter to K.H.M.H.  She needs to get surgery.”  And he mentioned something like, “oh today is Sunday.”  And because it’s Sunday they can’t do that here, he mentioned something and it didn’t sounded that right.  He said he already called Belize City and he’s going to do a urine test, blood test and another x-ray from her before they send her up.  Okay, I live like, you can see, I am just a couple minutes from the hospital, so I went and I told my daughter, I said, “Babe, ah gwein home go pack wahn lee bag fu mek we go dah Belize because dehn wahn send yoh da Belize City.”  “Okay mom.”  I come and I packed the bag.  When I reach back, my daughter is on oxygen, they are there trying find her vein but they can’t.  From then, they end up and said well they are going to take her for an x-ray.  Now, she is on oxygen, they took her off.  I told the nurse, how is she going to take an x-ray and you’re going to take her off the oxygen.  They still took her off the oxygen, put her in a wheelchair and they went with her to the x-ray room.  I stayed in the room, I sent her down with my partner, he was the one who took her to the x-ray.  He came back and he said, “Marsh, he said, come, I need someone to help me hold up Jayeisha so she can do the x-ray.  That didn’t happen.  She passed away right there in the x-ray room.”


Tyrone was at home getting ready to go and visit his girlfriend at the hospital when he received word that she had just passed away.


Tyrone Hernandez

“When the incident happened the Sunday morning, I was at home.  I never know, because the Saturday night she called me offa her ma phone and tell me how she feel and I tell ahn, okay then, Sunday morning I di cohn look fi yo.  So Sunday morning, I neva know nothing.  I deh da one ah my friend house, I tell he I gwein home go bathe and I gwein da hospital.  When I di go home, I get di news from my auntie and my auntie di tell me and my auntie di cry and I neva believe, ‘til I reach da hospital like, sih ahn deh just di lay down noh di breathe.  I think like it’s just a nightmare, like dah noh real.”


Despite the surreal experience, Jayeisha’s death has come to pass and along with it now comes a myriad questions about what happened.  Undoubtedly, the family is preparing to mount legal action against the Government of Belize.  Director of Health Services, Dr. Marvin Manzanero has weighed in cautiously.


Marvin Manzanero

Dr. Marvin Manzanero, Director of Health Services

“In any process that can be a potential negligence case, the usual course of action is going to be, there’s an internal review conducted that is usually sent up to us.  Contingent upon what we find, we may be asked for an external review and then make decisions based on that.”


Reporting for News Five, I am Isani Cayetano.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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