BVI News

BVI emergency room exceeds global standards

Health Minister Vincent Wheatley has stated that the BVI Health Services Authority has improved wait times at its emergency room to levels that are above international standards.

Residents have long bemoaned processing times at the emergency room and have stated that even those with serious conditions have had to wait long periods before receiving care.

But in the May 2 House of Assembly sitting, the Health Minister said this situation has improved significantly.

“I’ve been informed that wait times at the BVIHSA emergency room were assessed and were found to be even better than international benchmarks such as the UK, whose maximum wait times is four hours,” Wheatley said in response to a question asked by Eighth District Representative Marlon Penn.

“This means we have been able to formulate the system so persons don’t have to wait unnecessarily lengthy times,” Wheatley added.

At the same time, there are still factors that affect wait times at the emergency room. As an example, the minister said sometimes the hospital’s admitting wards are at full capacity and this prevents patients who present to the emergency room from being admitted as they should. 

Ambulance and EMTs

In the meantime, Minister Wheatley said there are three ambulances on Tortola and a new one that was brought into commission to service Virgin Gorda. He said plans are underway to secure a new ambulance for Tortola but added that the territory will have to wait 12 months for the new emergency vehicle to arrive.

As for Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs), the minister said these professionals are being trained with the hope of deploying them to different health facilities across the territory.

“Efforts are currently underway to integrate EMT-trained personnel into the staff at clinics in East End, West End and Anegada to support the teams there. In the past, we’ve tried to recruit personnel from Anegada and Jost Van Dyke. Such an integration is more feasible and culturally appropriate given the unique dynamics of our sister islands,” Minister Wheatley explained.


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  1. Huh says:

    We should be be comparing ourselves with the failing NHS system in the UK.

    Like 10
    Dislike 2
  2. Salty Fish says:

    Any excuse to remain wallowing in the mud by gauging our services against something less than mediocrity! That way leadership can always spin it that we look good against something lesser than ourselves!

    Our population is no bigger than a small village in the UK or USA and we have a GDP that ranks us in the top 30 Countries in the world, placing us between Japan and South Korea at almost $40,000 per capita.

    Think on that, and let me know if services here are acceptable?

    In fact, the GDP of many British Territories are considerably better than the UK’s GDP and our very own – Cayman, Bermuda, TCI, etc., etc.

    We all need to take along look in the mirror and ask ourselves the simple question as to why we are where we are?

    Like 17
    Dislike 2
  3. YEAH RITE says:

    self praise ain’t no recommendation ( SEE ME AND COME LIVE WITH ME IS TWO DIFFERENT THINGS •
    as said before , the SENERIO with the ( AC ) is a serious RED CARD

    Like 13
  4. Big Dix says:

    No one has asked by what metrics is Cousin Vinny using to make the claim that the ambulance service is amongst the best. Great if we are but I would have expected someone to ask him to refer us to the independent study and metrics. Our opposition in the HOA is very weak. Just as weak as the administration themselves

  5. True says:

    The physical building has always been top notch, it’s the human resources and service that’s the problem!!!

    Like 16
  6. ASIs says:

    Global Standard.
    Within this earthly globe, classification is within First Second and Third World’s.

    BVI is rated #1 within 3rd World Standard in everything. Reality!

  7. WTF says:

    The emergency room in a tropical environment that just had no air con for weeks on end? Pull the other one. Which statistic did they cherry-pick this time?

  8. Laughable says:

    If it wasn’t so ridiculous

  9. Not so fast says:

    This is a blatant lie. I was there recently and wait time was almost 4 FOUR hours to see a doctor when they were not even so busy. It’s really ridiculous and customer service is poor and could care less. They just sit their butt their dumbfounded and looking at you like what the hell you talking to me for. Vincent Wheatley it’s a lie. Please stop while you’re at it.

  10. Again says:

    Tell me why in VG when we visit the Nurse Iris O’neal clinic we have to wait to call a Doc.when I understand a Doc.should be always on duty.I was told we have six or seven

  11. More blatant lies says:

    Under staff overworked emergency unit .

    What is your measuring stick for such a statement .
    Survey your staff at emergency and the make the assessment. Wow!
    Have more respect for us as BVIslanders and do not insult our intelligence with such erroneous statement
    Tell that to a fowl and she will pick you

  12. Wonderful. says:

    I found my recent visit to the ER to be a high standard. I’m a gay man and one evening I decided to stuff a few plastic toy horses in my bu**. Upon realizing I couldn’t get them out, I proceeded to the ER. After an exam I asked the doctor what my condition was. He replied “stable”.

  13. 1st district says:

    Dem elected forget that we ain’t as bright as them but have a dictionary. We know how to spell, pronounce and know the meaning of words. SMH!!

  14. Reality Check says:

    A friend recently went to the ER and was appaled at the physical condition, …, obvious signs of haphazard cleaning, to the point that the person immediatly left.

  15. Trauma says:

    No trauma care – which is all about speed.
    Unless you live 10 minutes from the hospital in Tortola, you dead.
    And if you bleed too much, there is no blood bank anywhere but Tortola.
    Heath care (what are you talking about?) We sister island people are in the middle ages.

  16. Rubbish & Lies says:

    I work at the BVIHSA and this article is BS!!

    The wait time in the ER is RIDICULOUS!!

    The employee turnover rate is HIGH

    ALL departments are understaffed.

    And the staff is OVERWORKED & UNDERPAID … Especially the cleaners

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