NOTES FOR ADDRESS BY HIS EXCELLENCY THE GOVERNOR-GENERAL THE MOST HON. SIR PATRICK ALLEN, ON, GCMG, CD FOR TOUR OF THE BUSTAMANTE HOSPITAL FOR CHILDREN MONDAY 13TH DECEMBER, 2010

Preamble

  • Mr. Lyttleton Shirley – Board Chairman, South East Regional Health Authority (SERHA)

  • Mrs. Beverley Needham – CEO, Bustamante Hospital

  • Dr. Michelle Ann Richards Dawson – Senior Medical Officer
  • Mr. Donald Farquharson – Regional Director, SERHA

  • Mr. Godfrey Boyd – Parish Manager, Kingston and St. Andrew Health Services
  • Mrs. Patricia Ingram martin – Matron, BHC

  • Ms. Jacqueline Ellis – Administrator Bustamante Hospital

  • Reverend Jean Forbes – Hospital Chaplain

  • Members of staff of the Bustamante Hospital

  • Ladies and gentlemen

Good afternoon

Address
In 1963, just a year after Jamaica received its independence, the Bustamante Hospital for Children was founded to provide a comprehensive range of services in pediatric medical and surgical specialties and sub-specialties.  Some 70,000 patients are seen annually and up to 5 years ago, approximately 700,000 pediatric cases overall were seen at the hospital.   

Bustamante hospital has become a member of the extended family of King’s House.  Lady Allen visits and reads to the children every Monday, and the hospital is the first stop on this our annual hospital tour.

Hospital stays can be a lonely experience for patients and even more so for children. As children recover in hospital it is important that they are visited by family and friends, as it helps them to remember that someone cares and can even make the healing process appear shorter.

I am pleased with the holistic approach to health care delivery that you have adopted. The Medical Social Work Department and the Learning Activity Centre of the hospital, ensure that the psychosocial, educational and recreational components of wellness and health care delivery are addressed.

Today I recognize the great service given by the staff to this institution and nation, especially to those who are helpless, vulnerable and defenseless. It speaks volumes to the goodness in you and your selfless spirit in sharing the gifts and talents with which you are bestowed.

Over the past 47 years this hospital has benefited from the specialties of Jamaica’s best pediatricians and health care workers.  We could say that a star studded list of medical luminaries have left their footprints of faithful service to be matched or excelled by those who come after.  Despite the challenges which existed in all of the 47 years, I am sure that the present team is well able to make significant strides and contribution to the care of our children.  
The Role of Doctors and health care workers
Above all, do so even when you perceive that your services are under-appreciated.  There was a newspaper article recently in which someone identified as a nurse, bemoaned the behaviour of some patients who never say thank you after being treated at a hospital.  In spite of this, I encourage you, be not weary in well doing. 

Conclusion
I use this opportunity to commend Mrs. Beverley Needham CEO of the Bustamante Hospital, for the leadership that has been provided to the hospital.  I also extend appreciation to the many Doctors, nurses, other health care workers, the administrative and support staff of the hospital, as well as organisations and individuals whose continued contribution to the Bustamante Hospital has allowed it to successful serve its clientele each year. 

I assure the staff and all stakeholders that your work and kind efforts have not gone unnoticed. 

Best wishes.