BVI News

Existing protocols poses roadblocks for specialist doctors who frequent the BVI

Dr Heskith Vanterpool of the Bougainvillea Clinic.

While commending the government for its efforts in stamping out the coronavirus in the territory, owner of the Bougainvillea Clinic Dr Heskith Vanterpool said there are many existing roadblocks for healthcare specialists who usually travel to the BVI to treat patients.

Dr Vanterpool explained that due to the low population of the territory, having resident specialist physicians and surgeons is not practical. As such, ever so often, several doctors specializing in various fields would be flown in to care for patients.

However, since the arrival of COVID-19, the procedure to get these patients the specialist care they require has been met with roadblocks.

“We say no man is an island. But, no island is an island. It cannot exist in isolation. We need to interact with other islands, with the continents. People need to start coming back into the BVI,” Dr Vanterpool said during the Honestly Speaking radio programme on Thursday.

He continued: “The question is how do we do this and how do we do it safely, as safely as possible bearing in mind that we can never be 100 percent successful. Unless COVID-19 dies out throughout the world, as long as it is existing the COVID-19 virus is going to come to the BVI at some point.”

Quarantine an issue

Dr Vanterpool explained that during a typical visit to the BVI, these specialists are only going to be in the territory for a few days. He said it is the existing regulations are therefore impractical for these doctors to be made to go into quarantine for two weeks.

“If I were to bring one of my specialist doctors in for three days to look after the patients, we cannot put them in quarantine for 14 days before they are allowed to see patients. And neither is it practical when they return to their country for them to have to go back in quarantine. Those are some of the confounding issues we are looking at,” Dr Vanterpool argued.

Another issue surrounds proving that these physicians are negative for the virus.

He explained: “I have, after some discussions and back and forth, approval for my visiting doctors to begin to come back but there are certain provisions that we need to put in place and we have to abide by those.”

“One of them is the person coming in should have a test within a short period of time before leaving to come to show we are negative. But guess what? We have a problem because in many of the Caribbean islands, we are still taking samples and sending down to the laboratory in Trinidad and they say they will not do a test unless the person is sick. So you have a doctor who wants to come, how is he or she going to get a test?” he questioned. 

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  1. yeaah Heskith says:

    u is one don’t let VIP gov play with your money. mah boy

  2. Nah says:

    Keep them Drs out. You keepin everyone else out. You all be so smart you don’t need the help. BVI dr good enough for BVI people’s.

    Like 1
    Dislike 9
  3. G****y says:

    He is a g****y man, wants to bring Corona in for his g****y earnings

    Like 4
    Dislike 6
  4. Observer says:

    The Doctor’s point are valid. There are lots of things the Government didn’t consider which like Covid-19 are also putting lives at risks, especially those that need specialist medical care as the Dr. Mentioned. The Government is allowing people’s paranoia to dictate what measures are implemented. The big question is if successful vaccine is not found will they continue to keep the borders closed until one is found to the complete detriment of the tourism sector? As the Dr. Said, Covid may be with us for sometime and we will just have to adapt in a way that balance things out.

    Like 16
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  5. Immune says:

    It’s called your auto-immune system, which has kept humanity alive for millions of years. Yes, we need to take steps to protect those vulnerable. But you can’t remain under a rock, hiding indoors or cut off from society and daily life. The virus is here, and will go through the community eventually. Deal with it now, or have a prolonged economic depression, followed by an outbreak later. It will happen, now or later.

    Like 11
    Dislike 4
  6. Real says:

    The same virus that came back positive from a goat and papaya y’all better get right and cut this crap out

    Like 1
    Dislike 3
  7. All for SELF Interest says:

    Would like to know has any of his patience died with covid19 or any died at all without specialist treatment?

    If the answer is NO, we can see a lot of times specialist treatment not needed except for the good Dr. to cash in on NHI.

    He must be missing and far from making $13 mil as he did in 2016, first year of NHI

    Mr. Premier, Specialist are humans too and capable of carrying the Virus. Please treat them like everyone else. I wonder if the good Dr. really have a need for specialists. We did well without them for 3 months now and will continue to do well. Please Dr. appealing for his own pocket and not patients who are doing so well without specialist so far. Give NHI a break. Oh he just heard Gov gave NHI some Millions. I see, he want to catch in that’s all it is. Love of Money.

    Like 2
    Dislike 1
  8. Where have these people been?? says:

    Yea, great idea. We have no cases in country. Let in these doctors that have been in hospitals where they care for Covid-19 cases!! Are you mental?? We did all this sacrifice to keep Covid out and now you are going to give it all away for STUPIDNESS.

  9. Hmm says:

    GREED is a deadly sin.

  10. Nuna biznass says:

    Time to get reopening plan in place with suggested proactive common sense safety measures like every other island has already done

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