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Friday, March 25 2011

PRIME MINISTER Kamla Persad-Bissessar says Government will not be
terminating the contracts of Cuban doctors and nurses who were recruited
under the previous PNM administration to fill vacancies in the health
sector until those positions could be filled by qualified nationals.

She made the point while giving the assurance that there was no health
crisis in the country, following the suspension of five doctors and four
nurses at the San Fernando General Hospital (SGFH) in the wake of the
death of Chrystal Ramsoomair at the institution on March 4.

On Monday, Opposition Leader Dr Keith Rowley claimed Government will not
be renewing the contracts of Cuban doctors and nurses when their
contracts expire in August and December respectively.

“Until the Government can tell us that we are in a position to fill all
the positions with nationals, they must also tell us how they will treat
with the vacancies that they will exacerbate when they do not renew the
contracts of the Cuban support staff that we have working here,” Rowley

Speaking with reporters after addressing the opening of an EMA business
forum at the Hilton Trinidad on Wednesday, Persad-Bissessar said, “No.
No such decision (not to renew the contracts of Cuban doctors and
nurses) has been taken by the Cabinet.” Asked whether she felt there was
a health crisis in the country in the wake of the suspension of medical
personnel at SFGH, Persad-Bissessar replied, “There are several concerns
with respect to the health sector. It is a matter that is ongoing. We
will do what we can to bring to an end whatever impasse there may be.”


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