Health Minister-designate Envisions Establishment of Trauma Unit

Feb 5, 2024 - 19:58
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Health Minister-designate Envisions Establishment of Trauma Unit

Liberia’s Health Minister designate, Dr. Louise M. Kpoto has envisioned the establishment of a trauma unit to reduce the burden on John F. Kennedy Memorial Hospital in catering to burned and accident patients if confirmed.

The major trauma center is supported by a number of trauma units.

Trauma units are important in providing immediate life-saving services to patients who, because of their injuries, are not stable enough to travel to the major trauma center and, following which, will transfer them quickly to the major trauma center.

Facing the Senate Committee on Health chaired by Grand Cape Mount County Senator Dabah Vapilah Monday, February 5, 2024 for her confirmation hearing held at the Senate Chambers, Dr. Kpoto said the country’s largest health center is overwhelmed with many cases.

Giving her emergency plans to the Health Committee, the recently nominated Health Minister recalled the gas tanker explosion in Totota, Bong County which claimed the lives of over 60 citizens and how challenging it was to the major health center due to the limited space.

She stressed that the building of a trauma unit aside from JFK to adequately address and focus on individuals victim of fire incidents as in the case of the Totota situation and also accommodate severe and major motor accident cases among others.

“If we have to build, it may take time but can we just look at a particular building to convert it to a trauma unit? I’m not only looking at the burned patients, the motorcyclists accidents, there are accidents that will come from the “keh-keh” [tricycle] so the JFK doesn’t have that capacity to absorb all those kinds of cases and besides the capacity of absorbing those cases, you need trained health workers,” Dr. Kpoto stressed.

The Health Minister-designate further emphasized the need to have more trained health workers in infectious control to operate the trauma unit as envision by her administration if confirmed by the Liberian Senate.

“There is more concentration at the ER [Emergency Room] at the JFK and during my visit there, most of the doctors were running here and there to the ER and focusing on the burned patients. Had we built or converted a building to a trauma unit which will have a burn unit, it will solve this problem within the health sector.

She also named infrastructure, education, motivation as well as monitoring and evaluation as the hallmarks of her leadership for medical practitioners mainly assigned in the rural parts of the country.

At the same time, Dr. Louise M. Kpoto emphasized that if confirmed, the Senate will not get the expected results from the health sector if the needed budgetary support is not provided.

“Give me the necessary support and you’ll get the health sector that you want,” she noted.

While bragging about her long stay in the medical sector, including her qualification and suitability experience wise for the job and passion driven leadership she brings to the Ministry of Health.

Dr. Kpoto has also told the Chair and members of the Senate Committee on Health that if confirmed, her administration will work tirelessly and ensure that the Liberian sector is second to none.

Meanwhile, our legislative reporter said the Senate Committee on Health through its Chair, Senator Dabah Vapilah is expected to report to the plenary of the august body in the coming days for further actions. 

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Emmanuel M. Weedee-Conway Emmanuel Moriero Weedee-Conway is a Liberian journalist with over 15 years of experience in the Liberian media. He currently serves as the News Editor at the Heritage Newspaper and was recently appointed as News Publisher at Kool Online. In addition, he holds a Bachelors of Art degree in Mass Communication from the faith-based African Methodist Episcopal University (AMEU) with emphasis in Print Journalism and minor in Public Administration. Weedee-Conway also holds several local and international certificates in media trainings