BY DESMONDE RAHE
THE National Referral Hospital (NRH) Medical Laboratory recently welcomed new set of medical equipment to assist with the ongoing medical care services to patients in the country.
The Solomon Islands Government funded the three new medical technologies. It consists of a Biochemistry Analyser, Electrolyte Analyser and Haematology Analyser.
NRH Director of the Medical Laboratory Department, Alfred Dofai said today, we are here to witness the commissioning of the Biochemistry Analyzer, Electrolyte Analyser and Haematology Analyser, which costs the Solomon Islands Government SBD $ 1.3 Million.
“For this I wish to commend the Government for responding positively in approving funds for this equipment’s, which is now ready for the patients care service in the National Referral Hospital.”
Dofai highlighted the significant challenges experienced by staffs of the medical laboratory in ensuring quality of services are delivered to local patients in the country.
“Today brings joy and relief after months of frustration and dissatisfaction on patient care. Since 2017, a newly installed Biochemistry analyzer didn’t work out and failed to function even during its warrantee period.
“Since then patients have been given substandard treatments; some have lost their lives, although we have the expertise of a few specialist doctors at the NRH,” he told representatives of key stakeholders attending the commissioning programme at the NRH.
He further described the past challenges and frustration undergone by his department to purchase such specialised medical laboratory equipment and warned not to repeat such dilemma.
“I wish to highlight the seriousness of the downtime the previous purchase has done to the lives of patients at NRH that I do not want to see in the future.
“Choosing unspecialised suppliers will only give us a situation as the one we have seen in 2017. For instance, laboratory analysers are highly specialized equipment that only requires specialised companies to sell.
“I must warn that during tender process, suppliers will claim to have services engineers that can fix their machine when in fact they are not specialized to fix them”
“Care must be taken when selecting machines and who is supplying them,” Dofai said.