From left to right: Chief Operations Officer, QEH, Dr. Christine Goodridge and Minister of State in the Ministry of Health and Wellness, Dr. the Honourable Sonia Browne receive the donations from Charlene Thorpe of Thorpe’s International Produce; President, Barbados Haemophilia Association, Erica Worrell; Jaylan Seaton-Dyal of the Barbados Haemophilia Association; and Director of Sales, Grady Marketing Inc., Ayrton Bannister. (Photo: QEH)

While there is not a high prevalence of haemophilia, a rare bleeding disorder, in Barbados, those who have the condition require the services of the Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH).

That is why donations like those presented to the hospital’s Haematology Department this morning by the Barbados Haemophilia Association, Thorpe’s International Produce and Grady Marketing are appreciated, says Minister of State in the Ministry of Health and Wellness with responsibility for the QEH and non-communicable diseases, Dr. Sonia Browne.

The department was gifted with six ergonomic chairs for staff and a brand new scale to ensure patients’ weights are taken accurately when they visit.

Minister Browne, pointed out this was the second time, in as many weeks, that private citizens and the private sector had come forward to make donations to the hospital, stating that it was “a good start to my tenure here (at the hospital)”.

“Each and every donation, no matter how small or large, is greatly appreciated, and I want to encourage the members of the public to continue in this vein.  I want to thank Ms. Erica Worrell (President of the Barbados Haemophilia Association) for seeing that this donation happened….

“Haemophiliacs do need the services of the hospital. I have a whole family or two that are haemophiliacs and I know they have it hard.  I know what it means to be a haemophiliac, obviously not personally but from a professional basis. And for them to come forward and offer this generous donation of the scale and the chairs to the Haematology Department, I can only say thank you,” Dr. Browne stated.         

President of the Barbados Haemophilia Association, Ms. Worrell, knows all too well the seriousness of the condition.  She has a son with severe haemophilia. It usually affects males, and is inherited.  

She approached Ms. Charlene Thorpe of Thorpe’s International Produce, who donated the scale, while Grady Marketing supplied the chairs.

“We found this donation fitting because we saw the need to ensure that our public health workers are comfortable when performing their daily tasks. And, seeing as I have been connected to [the haematology] clinic for the past 16 years, it warms my heart to be able to give back to them as a small ‘thank you’,” she explained.

Haemophilia is a rare condition that affects the blood’s ability to clot. The symptoms can be mild to severe, depending on the level of clotting factors of the individual. The main symptom is bleeding that does not stop.  

People with haemophilia may have nosebleeds that take a long time to stop; bleeding from wounds that lasts a long time; bleeding gums; skin that bruises easily, as well as pain and stiffness around joints, such as elbows, because of bleeding inside the body (internal bleeding).

melissa.rollock@barbados.gov.bb

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