PORT OF SPAIN – Debra Prescilla, who claimed she was assaulted by a medical doctor while at the Arouca Health Centre on Monday evening. PICTURE MICHEAL BRUCE
A 50-year-old woman who went to the Arouca Health Centre on Monday seeking medical treatment for an intense back pain alleges she was forced to seek further medical treatment for injuries she sustained when she was allegedly cuffed in the head and slammed against a wall by a medical doctor. However, the North Central Regional Health Authority is claiming it was she who attacked the doctor.
Debra Prescilla yesterday told Guardian Media she was attacked because she stood up for an employee at the health centre and confronted the doctor over the way he spoke to her.
“The doctor was being very disrespectful to the woman and I was shocked at the way he talked to her and I told him that he had no right to talk to her like that,” Prescilla said.
Prescilla said she went to the health centre around 3:15 p.m. to see a doctor, got herself listed and sat and waited for hours until the doctor arrived.
“About three minutes after he called out to the receptionist in a certain way and told her that she must come in his office right away, that he wanted to speak to her,” Prescilla recalled.
“She told him just now and I heard him say ‘I said come into my office right now, I want to speak to you, otherwise I am not seeing any patients tonight’… she said just now sir and he answered back saying ‘Not just now sir! My name is (name called) and I want you right now in my office,’”
She added, “I said to him that he is very disrespectful and have no right to talk to her like that. That’s when he said he would not see me.”
Shortly after 6 pm Prescilla was called into the doctor’s office.
“When he saw me he said he will not be seeing me. I told him that I did not do anything and that I am paying taxes as anybody else. I kept telling him that he had to see me, that it was well within my rights, that is when he began screaming at me and he got up, walked up to me and cuffed me to the side of my head. He then pushed me on the wall. He scrambled me . . . I got scrapes to my chest . . . all that time when he was hitting me he was shouting, making it sound like I was the one attacking him.”
Prescilla was later treated at the Arima Hospital for the injuries she allegedly sustained in the attack.
However, in a release yesterday, NCRHA corporate communications manager Peter Neptune said it is alleged the doctor was the one attacked. Neptune said the doctor was providing care to a patient affected by acute conjunctivitis (red eye) when “the female patient barged into the consultation room and assaulted the doctor with an umbrella and her fists.”
“So far the authority has not been able to determine a motive for the actions by the patient. A report was made to the Arouca Police Station by the doctor affected and police officers are currently investigating the incident. Statements have been taken from patients who were present during the incident, as well as other medical staff who were on duty at the time,” Neptune said.
Officers of the Arouca Police Station are investigating.