The Medical Complaints Council of Trinidad and Tobago (“the Council”) is a Non- Profit Organization founded by Attorney-At-Law Martin Anthony George. Mr. George has been in practice for twenty-three (23) years and has written extensively on the topic of medical negligence. Mr. George is a prominent advocate of driving improvements in our healthcare services; having made numerous appearances across our national media to raise awareness and encourage discussion on the work needed to advance our healthcare system.
The Council was established and incorporated on the 25th of May 2015. It is an independent, non-profit organization, which provides free service to members of the public. Citizens of Trinidad and Tobago are allowed to make formal complaints regarding any harm or injury suffered, as a result of the alleged negligence of any hospital, medical authority, and/or medical practitioner within any private or public health institution within Trinidad and Tobago. All complaints made by citizens will be gathered and subsequently dealt with by the Medical Complaints Council in the most effective, impartial, and expeditious manner.
To date the Council is operating out of the office of Martin George and Company located at #43 Dundonald Street, Port of Spain and #33 Bacolet Park, Scarborough Tobago. In order to make a complaint, the complainant must first call either the firm’s Trinidad Office at (868) 623-5187 or our Tobago Office at (868) 639-1579 to schedule an appointment.
The complainant will then visit one of our offices whether it be the Tobago or Trinidad office and meet with the Council’s Interviewing Officer. The Project cases would be constantly monitored and evaluated by a Senior Medical Officer, the Head Attorney, and the management board twice per month.
Our Firm’s Principal Attorney Mr. Martin George had a press conference on May 4th, 2015, whereby he indicated that he wants to set up a Medical Complaints Council as a Non-Profit Organization in T&T to give a voice to and to be able to highlight complaints from citizens who have Medical Negligence complaints and who sometimes feel they are neglected, ignored or maltreated by Hospital or Medical Authorities and Medical Personnel in T&T.
To gather and collate information and data as regards complaints of citizens about Medical Negligence and Health Care complaints in relation to matters at the Nation’s public and private Health Institutions. It is not a Legal Service but rather a social intervention service to highlight and give voice to persons who may not otherwise have an opportunity to highlight and bring to light and to the attention of the authorities, their Medical Complaints and grievances about medical treatment and standards of care received at public and private Health care Institutions in Trinidad and Tobago.
For too long our Medical Authorities and Officials have had a culture and code of silence and have felt that they don’t have to account or be held responsible for their actions or lack thereof in relation to health care and medical treatment complaints from the public generally. It will comprise of a Board of Directors and will have a Receptionist/Secretary, an Interviewing Officer who will take the initial Statement and look at documents brought in and advise as to what other basic documents are needed, and also an Investigative Officer who will assess and process the claims and complaints and indicate what possible likelihood of credibility and/or success the claim may have. There will also be an Intervention Officer who will write to the relevant Medical Personnel and or authorities setting out the details of the client’s claim or requesting on their behalf the relevant documents to formulate their claims.
It is not a Legal Advisory Service. It is a Social Service and all persons using the service are recommended to consult with and seek advice from their own Attorneys. This is a free social service offered to members of the public with the aim of raising the standard and quality of Medical Health Care generally for all citizens of Trinidad and Tobago. Given the plethora of Medical Negligence complaints by citizens generally, it is clear that there is a problem in Trinidad & Tobago with the standard and quality of health care and treatment being offered at our Medical Institutions.
There has been the Gladys Gafoor Commission of Enquiry in 2007 with several recommendations, many of which have never been implemented.
There is currently the Tobago Regional Health Authority Investigation and Report triggered by the death of a young mother and her Baby at the Scarborough Hospital a few months ago. The Tobago Authorities are now refusing to release that Report to the public. The Medical Complaints Council intends to champion the call for the release and publication to the nation of that entire Report in its original, untampered version.
There is an ongoing debate in Parliament piloted by Independent Senator Dr. Victor Wheeler where he complains about the current structure and set up of the RHA’s which clearly are not functioning the way they were intended. Independent Senator David Small also commented on it and there have also been the comments of Dr. Delmont Baker condemning the THA for its failure to release the TRHA Report.
Martin George is calling on all citizens and interested persons to give feedback, thoughts, and ideas as this Medical Complaints Council gets going. We need volunteers, supporters, and ideas from Professionals but we MUST make a change for the betterment and improvement of Health Care and Health Care standards, systems, and delivery in Trinidad and Tobago.
Like us on Facebook – Forward to Friends and family, tell everyone about it and let’s get this going.