21 May 2009

It was slightly over 9 o' clock in the morning. The waiting area was packed with people, mothers, mothers-to-be, fathers and their young ones. All the seats are mostly taken. Some are inconsiderate enough to put their belongings on the empty seat depriving those who were standing the chance to rest their tired legs. Many were standing around, idling and pacing to and fro while waiting for their turn which felt like an eternity. Some were holding their babies and little children in their arms. Others brought strollers. A chorus of cries can be heard in the background drowning the sound from the TV hanging at the corner. While some obviously in need of nourishment, others were probably in unease due to the hot and humid atmosphere in the clinic. The fan was blowing top speed yet since there was so many people inside, you had to sit directly beneath it to feel the cool air.

There was a 5 meter double lane queue at the maternity sections. A few heavily pregnant ladies were seen standing in the queue. The two staff nurse attending to them worked tirelessly, non-stop and still the queue inches only slightly as the hours go by. They'd probably could do with an extra hand or two. But that's the best their employer can provide at the moment.

Given a choice, they'd probably bring their children some place else much more comfortable. The thing is most of them don't have that luxury of choosing. They'd rather brave the crowd and nightmarish waiting time than spend their hard-earned money on private clinics. So who do you blame? The ministry who didn't do enough for the people? The government who'd rather build 88 storey skyscrapers, lavish multi-million sailing-boat events and send a tourist to space than build better amenities and provide a decent health care service for the people? Definitely not the people who didn't earn enough to afford private health care!

If anybody who can change all this for the better, we can. Think and do our part when the chance come up next.