Minister of Health Donville Inniss has promised a thorough investigation if there is evidence of questionable purchasing practices at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital.
And the senior Government spokesman has challenged Opposition Barbados Labour Party MP, Dr. William Duguid, who has raised the concerns, to produce such evidence.
After recently questioning how the hospital was procuring certain items, Duguid returned to the issue today in the Housing of Assembly, claiming that the QEH had paid twice the amount of money for gloves than the Emergency Ambulance Service.
He also asserted that a shipment of gauze worth a quarter of a million dollars had been hidden and could not be used.
But Inniss said the Christ Church West MP “has his friends located within the QEH, who are conveniently feeding [him] with information, all be it half hearted information, information in pieces and not seeing the whole picture”.
“I would like the honorable member for Christ Church West to please present to this House copies of the invoices he has for those particular items ordered. We need to know we are comparing apples with apples,” he said.
“The truth of the matter is that as someone intimately involved in health care he will know that he will have his own preferences for equipment and supplies to be used.”
As far as the allegation about imported gauze was concerned, the St. James South MP said: “I urge the honorable member for Christ Church West that if he has such evidence to please lay them here in the House of Assembly today or at least give it to me, his former friend and the one who has borne the brunt of his personal attacks, so that I can investigate.”
“What I find very offensive is politicians, particularly from the Barbados Labour Party, can come into Parliament and cast aspersions on the characters of the public officers who are not in a position to defend themselves,” Inniss added. (SC)