OFFICIAL WEBSITE OF THE UNITED NATIONAL CONGRESS, The Official Opposition In The Republic Of Trinidad And Tobago.

Seecharan: Health Ministry Must Allow Life-saving Medication

The Ministry of Health must immediately approve the importation of a life-saving drug for cancer patient Aneesa Doon. Further delay in giving permission could cost the precious life of a young citizen. It is unacceptable that red tape by the authorities has denied the family of Ms. Doon the right to bring in the medication from India.

Ms. Doon has been ailing with Hodgkin’s lymphoma and for months her family has been pleading in vain for official authorisation to facilitate importation. It is intolerable that internal issues at the Ministry of Health are denying approval that could give Ms. Doon the chance to be restored to good health. Ms. Doon is now bedridden, her health is continuing to decline, and she must rely on her family for everyday support.

Hodgkin’s lymphoma is a type of cancer that affects the lymphatic system, which is part of the body’s germ-fighting immune system. In Hodgkin’s lymphoma, white blood cells called lymphocytes grow out of control, causing swollen lymph nodes and growths throughout the body. Hodgkin lymphoma is one of the most curable cancers when diagnosed and treated early.

This is an example of the lack of vision and leadership that has led to chronic inefficiencies in our public health sector. The adversity imposed upon this patient characterizes the blatant disrespect that the Ministry of Health continues to show to our most vulnerable. The Ministry of Health must cut out the senseless bureaucracy and promptly permit importation of the essential medication.

With billions being spent on infrastructure projects throughout the country, the ease of receiving care has not trickled down to our most vulnerable. I have urged Minister Deyalsingh to invest in drugs and equipment. During the Private Members Motion on Healthcare Services, Minister Deyalsingh gave no firm commitment of the Government’s willingness to increase the allocation to essential drugs and diagnostic equipment in our nation’s hospitals.

With an annual fiscal allocation of over six billion dollars, it is unacceptable that citizens must be subject to such inefficiencies. Minister Deyalsingh must tell the nation of how he intends to alleviate the suffering of this citizen in accessing medication to treat her cancer.

Dr. Rishad Seecheran, D.D.S. (UWI), LL.B. (LON)
Member of Parliament, Constituency of Caroni East

Scroll to Top