Sexual harassment common in the health facilities of Jamaica’s Public Healthcare Sector

By | August 28, 2019

A lot of Jamaican immigrants residing in the United Kingdom and the United States list the terrible condition of the healthcare system of Jamaica amongst the reasons they are afraid to return home after getting retirement.

Doctor Christopher Tufton, the Health and Wellness Minister of Jamaica, at the beginning of this, stressed that the public healthcare system of the country is very well meeting the demands of the immigrant Jamaicans, however, in spite of this report, a contradicting tune is being sung by the actual professionals of the healthcare system.

Over the last seven days, a lot of stories have been exposed related to the unavailability of hospital equipment, treatment of junior doctors, and inferior management impacting the healthcare sector of the country.

After conducting a series of interviews by the Jamaica Observer, it was revealed that a number of junior doctors of the island had suffered continual sexual harassment in hospitals and clinics by their seniors who were known to having a history of maintaining abuse in the healthcare facilities.

A junior doctor who insisted on keeping his identity anonymous told that he has colleagues, both female and male, who have been harassed sexually by male consultants, however, they do not tell anyone since being in the good grace of the consultants is very important.

It has also been reported that a few doctors under training are not allowed to continue their studies due to failed ‘personal’ relationships with their seniors.

When the President of the Medical Doctors Association of Jamaica, Doctor Elon Thompson was contacted for a comment he stated that it was very likely for the incidents of sexual harassment to happen on the job, however, there were not a lot of complaints filed with the JMDA.

Other than having to face sexual harassment in the workplace, nurses and doctors often complain about the inadequate equipment in the health facilities of the Island.