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  • Writer's pictureKVZK TV

LBJ Hospital cafeteria still open

By: Tosimaeʻa Tupua

The Chief Executive Officer of the LBJ Hospital Moefaauo Bill Emmsley has issued a statement in response to a report published on Talanei online on August 12 titled DOH closes down LBJ Hospital cafeteria. Talanei reported that an inspection conducted by DOH found evidence of rats such as claw marks and droppings in areas where food is prepared. The report also says rats had traversed beyond the protective rat wiring enclosing the kitchen and that inspectors find the LBJ Kitchen as unsafe, unhygienic and unsanitary due to exposure to elements, making patients vulnerable to food borne illnesses.

In a statement issued on August 12 to KVZK News, CEO Moefaauo says the recent news article about the closure of the hospital cafeterias is inaccurate and unreliable.The media reported without consulting the hospital management. The cafeteria is still open and in operation. Despite the encounters of an outdated hospital, and severe staffing shortage of healthcare professionals, safety and quality patient care are the utmost concern for management. The current condition of the hospital has been from an accumulation of years of misguided priorities, insufficient preventative maintenance programs, and delayed expansion and renovations projects, says Moefaauo.

DOH”s environmental health inspector Aileen Solaita was one of the inspectors that inspected the cafeteria and says that DOH’s health inspection report dated July 25 has been given to DOH Director Motusa Tuileama Nua and a copy has also been provided to the Hospital Board of Directors with details of the inspection.

Solaita is unable to reveal the recommendation in the report given to the Hospital, however a copy of Motusa’s letter addressed to Moefaauo dated August 4rh 2022, says LBJ Tropical medical center is found to be in non compliance with public health requirements for prevention and control of public nuisances. As agents of public health and frontlines in the area of promoting sanitary and hygienic conditions. I fully support recommendations provisioned by our environmental health services division as evidenced by an inspection report dated July 25. Due to major violations listed in the report, the facility is deemed closed and corrective actions are a must to prevent any foodborne illnesses, says Motusa.

CEO Moefaauo says with the new leadership team a more comprehensive plan with an acute strategic approach in place for immediate mitigation efforts in multiple areas but not limited to radiology, ER, cafeteria and action plans with deadlines to address these challenges. These remedies will require time and enormous financial resources.

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