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Nov 12, 2021

Outspoken Doctor Resigns from KHMH Following Minister of Health Criticism of Hospital Authority

This week, the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital became the topic of controversy that ended with KHMH Board member, Dr. Fernando Cuellar, reportedly resigning from that post. Cuellar has not responded to our requests for an interview on the matter, but his abrupt departure comes two days after the Minister of Health and Wellness, Michel Chebat, suggested to reporters that, basically the KHMH, which is managed by a Board, needs to be self-sufficient. Chebat was answering questions about recent reports that some patients’ lives had been compromised because the hospital was not receiving timely provisions of medical supplies. Chebat explained to reporters on Wednesday there have been shipping challenges compounded by COVID. Here are Chebat’s comments.


Michel Chebat

Michel Chebat, Minister of Health and Wellness (Wed. Nov. 10, 2021)

“I think we need to understand that KHMH is a managing authority. They are independent of the Ministry of Health and Wellness. The Ministry of Health and Wellness gives them, the government gives them, a subsidy of two point four million dollars per month and it is expected that they are going to manage appropriately. Now, the government and the Ministry of Health also provide them with medication and medical equipment. I can tell you, last week Friday alone, we provided them with over a hundred and twenty five thousand dollars worth of medication. Now, it is no secret that supplies are not the way it use to be. Even, getting supplies into the country, shipping has become more difficult. And, because of the COVID pandemic the products are more difficult to come by. So, that is the challenge we are having. However, we have ordered some of these medications, and we are expecting in the short term to have some of those in country. Listen, when you have a board, and a managing authority, they need to step up and take responsibility for the management of the hospital. And, that is where the responsibility lies. As far as we are concerned, the Ministry of Health and Wellness is doing all that it can to support them, and we will continue to do that.”


Media outlets have posted on their digital platforms that Cuellar has not been pleased with recent appointments to the Board and other decisions that the Ministry has made that pertain to the hospital. News Five has also tried to get a comment from the KHMH Chairman, Dr. Andre Sosa, but he was in meeting with the Minister today. The Ministry’s Facebook page made a brief announcement this evening to say Minister Chebat met with KHMH board members to discuss the way forward and to put forth a proposal for the KHMH board’s review. We’ll keep following this story.

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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