18 Mar 2004

Fiji doctors say leaking hospital roof puts new babies at risk

10:34 am on 18 March 2004

A report from Fiji says the maternity unit at the country's main hospital in Suva poses a serious risk to lives.

The Fiji times quotes the head of obstetrics and gynaecology at the hospital, Dr James Fong, as saying babies continue to be born in a risky environment with a strong likelihood of clinical mishaps occuring.

Dr Fong says the risk to lives and of infection are high because no repairs have been carried out to the roof and ceiling which have been leaking for five months.

The problem was highlighted late last year but nothing has been done.

The Colonial War Memorial Hospital delivers about six thousand babies a year, about 600 of which are by Caesarian section.

A senior medical administrator, Dr Salimuni Tuga, is quoted as saying money was allocated to the Public Works Department in August and again last month but hospital authorities have no say on when the repairs will be made.