Doctors aren’t paid to work on lunch breaks, patient told

By Adel Fruean ,

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NOT HAPPY: Moe Lei Sam.

NOT HAPPY: Moe Lei Sam. (Photo: Samoa Observer)

A 66-year-old resident has expressed anger at the treatment she received from the Dental Health Services at the National Hospital. 

Moe Lei Sam from Lalovaea said she was told doctors don’t get paid to work lunch breaks when she visited the Dental Division.

“I went around midday to the dental hospital for treatment and it was the same time the dentists had their break,” she said. 

“I was not aware that the staff members at a hospital have lunch breaks because I thought it opens all the time.

“There were so many patients waiting in pain and I was one of them but I was told that dentists have one and a half hour break. 

“Then I complained outside that we were need of treatment but no one was there to assist us. 

“An employee from the Dental Hospital heard what I said and approached me and said that if I wanted to make a complaint, then I should go to the Chief Executive Officer (C.E.O.) of Health because doctors don’t get paid to work on lunch breaks.”

Moe said she apologised to the employee if she had said something offensive and explained that it was because of the pain she was going through.  

During her consultation, she said the dentist asked her why was she speaking in an angry tone.

 “She said that I should consider the fact that doctors have to eat too, because without food they won’t be able to function properly. 

“I told her that these are the issues should never be brought up while you’re treating a patient, if you want to talk about it, we can talk after treatment. I even apologised to her if I said something wrong.”

Moe said she left the dental centre and went to look for the C.E.O. of Health because she didn’t want to be treated by an angry person. 

“I couldn’t find the C.E.O. of Health because I was told he was at Malua. 

“I was very disappointed because in every hospital the needs of the patient should always come first. 

“I adviced the doctors and dentists to be patient with the patients because it’s their job to help us when are in need of treatment.”

Attempts to get a comment from the Hospital were not successful.

Another matter she wanted to relay was her views concerning Prime Minister Tuilepa Dr. Sa’ilele Malielegaoi’s statement: “Pay your taxes or face consequences” towards the Congregational Christian Church of Samoa. 

“Samoa is no longer in peace, it is made up of small islands and furthermore it is a Christian state, but look at what is happening to the government and the church. 

“We are founded under God as our country’s motto. But there is no peace, just disagreements, arguments and then there’s the high cost of living added to the daily struggle our people face, while they keep building more big buildings and comparing Samoa to overseas countries. 

“I am mostly worried for the young generation. I don’t care about old people because we can go anytime. Looking at these young generations, I feel sorry for them. There are so many children selling things all over town but the government is not doing anything about it.”

© Samoa Observer 2016

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