Deyalsingh Stays away from PAHO Probe

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HEALTH Minister Terrence Deyalsingh says he will not to intervene in the independent investigation led by the Pan American Health Organisation (PAHO) into the recent deaths of babies at the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) of the Port of Spain General Hospital.

Speaking at a news conference held at the Ministry of Health’s Corporate Headquarters in Port of Spain on Monday, Deyalsingh said he does not even know the names of the persons conducting the probe.

Freedom Law Chambers has raised concerns over the deaths of four additional babies at the NICU. Addressing reporters alongside Anthony Blake, chief executive of the North West Regional Health Authority and Dr Marlon Timothy, head of the NICU at the Port of Spain General Hospital, Deyalsingh said that while three PAHO representatives are physically present, the investigation involves virtual collaboration with experts worldwide.

Deyalsingh said his intention to maintain a “political hands-off approach,” refraining from involvement in the investigative process.

He expressed confidence that the report from PAHO will provide comprehensive insights into the circumstances surrounding the tragic incidents.

Dr Timothy said there was significant increase in premature births in Trinidad and since 2017.

He attributed this surge to factors such as delayed childbearing, obesity, and diabetes among expectant mothers.

Providing insights into the operations of the neonatal ICU, Dr Timothy outlined the various categories of neonates admitted for specialised care, ranging from extremely pre-term infants to those with low birth weights.

He said challenges associated with caring for premature babies, included susceptibility to infections and complications requiring extensive medical intervention.

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