Permanent Secretary for Health Doctor James Fong has confirmed to fijivillage that the angiogram and cath lab equipment has not been working at the CWM Hospital.
This follows information received from a concerned family that they had to desperately look for funds to get the procedure done at a private facility in Suva which cost close to $24,000.
The Nausori family had no other option late last month as the procedure to check for the blockage and carry out the next set of procedures could not be done on their 60 year old father at CWM Hospital because the machines were not working.
They then had to collect funds from family members and friends, and also took loans to finance the procedure at a private facility. A coronary angiogram is a procedure that uses X-ray imaging to see your heart's blood vessels. The test is generally done to see if there is a restriction in blood flow going to the heart.
A cardiac cath lab is a special hospital room where doctors perform minimally invasive tests and procedures to diagnose and treat cardiovascular disease. The procedures performed in a cardiac cath lab almost always involve tiny, flexible tubes, called catheters, which can be used instead of surgery, to access the heart and blood vessels.
A cath lab has special imaging equipment used to see the arteries and check how well blood is flowing to and from the heart. This information helps the care team to diagnose and treat blockages and other problems in the arteries. When asked by fijivillage on the information received regarding the machines not working, Doctor Fong confirmed that they are getting over a new machine to the CWM Hospital.
He says it is expected to arrive over the next few days.
Doctor Fong adds they also need to make arrangements for the installation team to come from Australia and much will depend on travel logistics around the current COVID situation.
He further says he is told the installation work could take a few weeks once the team is in.
We have also sent questions to Doctor Fong on what is the next available option for people who may have serious cardiac issues and need angioplasty and stenting done.
He is yet to respond.
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