Until now, all the statements made by Health Minister Dr. Abdullah Al-Rabeeah on the case of Reham, the 13-year-old girl who contracted HIV after she was given tainted blood in Jazan General Hospital, make him look like he is a third and neutral party in the issue with no direct involvement whatsoever.
When you read the minister’s statements, you will come to believe that the wrongdoer is an outsider to the ministry or that the case has personal dimensions. The latest of these was his claim that “friendship” would not protect anyone involved in the case.
Your Excellency, by your very portfolio you represent the Ministry of Health, which is Reham’s adversary in this case.
Therefore, I hope that the ministry’s senior officials will stop talking about the issue as if they were the neutral party who will ensure justice for the poor girl against those who did her wrong.
These statements are not only disrespectful to Reham alone but also to the rest of the country.
We are certain that the mistake is not the work of an individual but was embodied in the failure to carry out the hospital’s procedures, for which the ministry is responsible.
It is irresponsible on the part of the ministry to assign someone who is not qualified to do the job. This is the responsibility of the ministry and its top echelons. I was expecting a more courageous stand by the ministry’s senior officials, who should give priority to their conscience instead of their luxurious leather chairs.
Regretfully, it is clear that the ministry’s handling of the case was no different from its handling of all other cases involving medical mistakes.
The ministry always resorts to denials to absolve its officials of any direct responsibility and often looks for other remedies through quick decisions, which will fade away in no time at all.
The ministry leaves time itself to heal the wounds, especially as time is a source of never ending oblivion.