Cane harvester injured while loading punt

– relatives decry lack of medical attention

The relatives of a 28-year-old man, who was involved an accident at the Blairmont Estate, which resulted in his teeth being dislocated and his jaw being fractured, are decrying the medical assistance provided to him at the New Amsterdam Hospital and the Georgetown Public Hospital (GPH) and are calling on the authorities to investigate.

What should have been a normal working day for Farouk Juman of Cotton Tree, Berbice, last Saturday, turned out horrible when he was hit by a collapsing piece of wood and he later spent hours in pain without receiving assistance. Being told he would be given two Panadols, waiting for hours for an ambulance that never arrived and later almost being retransferred to the New Amsterdam Hospital from the GPH were just some of the man’s experiences as he attempted to seek medical attention.

Up to yesterday, even though he was a patient of the GPH the man continued to cry out in pain and said he was not seen by a doctor but his relatives were later told that he would be taken to the Cheddi Jagan Dental School today for assistance.

Speaking to Stabroek News yesterday the man’s father-in-law Shaiboodeen Khan also criticized the management of the Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo) since according to him no senior personnel from the sugar corporation even attempted to check on the man’s condition. He has been working with the corporation for the past eight years as a cane harvester.

Recalling the incident that occurred last Saturday morning, Khan said he and his son-in-law, a father of two, were among a group of four who were cutting and loading cane onto a punt. He said as his son-in-law was about to place a load of cane on the punt the piece of wood the canes were on collapsed and hit him and he fell between the punt and the cane field.

“When he fall down is like he top teeth get knock back, it gone right back and if you see de blood, it was bad and I know he in nuff pain,” the man said.

He surmised that the wood the corporation provided for the cane to be loaded on “was too soft and it just collapse under de weight.”

After the incident the young man was taken to the estate’s dentistry from where he was taken to the New Amsterdam Hospital via ambulance. At the hospital, Khan said, he got the shock of his life when the doctor who saw him indicated that he would be given “two Panadols and he must go home to come back.

“I start behaving bad because I ask he if he ain’t see de man mouth and I had to call [name of doctor] who come and see he and is he say the hospital can’t deal with he and he should go Georgetown.”

From 2 pm on Saturday they waited for an ambulance but at around 5pm no ambulance had arrived and Khan said he decided to contact the sugar corporation, which provided an ambulance to transport Juman to the hospital.

“But when we reach Georgetown de doctor ask de nurse if we come with a ambulance and when she say yes he say don’t send away de ambulance because it gat to carry he back and is de nurse who start saying certain things and showing he wha happen to he and is then he admit he…,” Khan said.

He described the doctor as being hostile, stating that at one point he asked him if his son-in-law used his mouth to walk and he had opted to use a wheelchair to take him around. Khan said he opted for the wheelchair as his son-in-law was in excruciating pain for hours and by then he was exhausted and still crying out. He was eventually admitted but according to the father-in-law no doctor had seen the young man up to yesterday and he was unable to speak to anyone in authority.

He attempted to meet Chief Executive Officer Michael Khan and Medical Director Dr Sheik Amir but was unable to do so.

Yesterday Juman’s face was swollen and he was still crying out for pain but indicated that sometime on Sunday night he was given morphine because of his constant crying and he eventually fell asleep. Again yesterday the man said he was given some pain killers and multi-vitamins. He is unable to eat and his relatives have been feeding him through a straw but even that proves difficult.

Khan said he is particularly worried for his son-in-law because of the bad experience he had with the GPH about seven years ago. He claimed that his father had been beaten by bandits and was admitted to the GPH, but died five days later without being seen by a doctor.

“So you see is like all a dis just bringing it up back. I want to know is where really we living man? In a dump or something? Whole day I searching fuh this doctor who suppose to see he and I can’t find he,” the man lamented.

Khan said he returned to work on Sunday as he had to load the cane they had cut on Saturday but he opted to load with his hand instead of the wood provided by the corporation.

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