Health Sabotage. We saw a few days ago that the entire Board of the Health Authority of Anguilla has resigned in protest at the Minister’s lack of support. They were a dedicated bunch. Their achievements are well known. The worked long hours, for a pittance. Then, the new Minister cut them off and forced them to resign. This they did en masse on 25th June. My question is, why? In matters of health, when you have bad news it is always advisable to get a second opinion. That is what I did about the crisis.
An insider has provided the following explanation. Minister Evans Macneil Rogers met the Board in place when he was appointed Minister of Health in February 2005. From the onset, it was clear that he was not in favour of the Health Authority, despite his public declarations to the contrary. He seemed to want his Ministry to have a hands-on approach as regards management of the health services. This was contrary to the very purpose of the Health Authority. Added to this, he felt the Board was Eric Reid’s Board. The members had all been appointed by Mr Reid. For some reason, this made him uncomfortable. It seemed he wanted to put his own “stamp” on the Board. He wanted to appoint the persons he preferred. He appeared to resent the fact that the Board had the power to appoint the CEO and executive managers, and not him. It was rumoured he had certain “friends” in mind for those positions. From the beginning of his term of service, he appeared to be dissatisfied with the Authority. The members of the Board held several meetings with him geared to finding out the source of his dissatisfaction. Nothing was forthcoming from him. The terms of three members of the Board expired in December 2006. Two of them indicated their willingness to be re-appointed. He did not re-appoint them. Nor did he appoint anyone else to fill their vacancies. The surviving members soldiered on. Up to the day they resigned, they operated with only four rather than the full complement of seven members.
This action of the Minister was a betrayal of the principle that health is too important to be under political control. The consultants had all recommended that there be an independent Health Authority for