CCU Protest March: “Save Our Seniors & Staff”

July 18, 2013

There is a protest march getting underway this afternoon [July 18] with people gathering at the hospital on Point Finger and planning to march to the BIU Headquarters on Union Street to protest the future closure of the Continuing Care Unit [CCU] at KEMH.

Some family members of patients in the CCU were contacted and told about the event, which is using the theme of “Save our patients and save our staff.”


Minister of Health and Seniors Patricia Gordon-Pamplin previously said that “If the CCU closes, it will not be in the next few days, the next few weeks or even the next few months. Any closure will be done over the course of at least two years.”

“Proper and acceptable residential facilities will have to be found for both the seniors and the young disabled – and the planning for this will not take days, weeks or months but literally years,” said Minister Gordon-Pamplin.

“I understand that the staff at the Hospital (especially those who provide service at the CCU) are concerned that they will be out of work. In this regard, I think it’s important to acknowledge and remind everyone that the BHB management has already included the Unions in discussions about the financial position of the BHB,” said the Minister.

“In addition, the vast majority of the CCU staff are Unionized, and their Union agreements set out the details of what has to be done if and when a service is discontinued. I know that the BHB management team are entirely familiar with the Collective Agreements and will abide by their provisions.”

As of 12.30pm there were about two dozen people present. The organisers said they were disappointed with the turnout, and noted that many of the employees are here on permits and said if they lose their jobs they will go home.

“We don’t have the option of going home,” said one staffer. “We are home.”

One of the organisers said that they had talks months ago and they were told that the CCU was not closing, and then woke up this week to read media reports saying otherwise.

“We work hard for our patients, we are going to stand firm and we are going to stand together and we are going to fight this. Because where are these patients going to go?” said one of the organisers.

“We have special patients with Alzheimers and dementia, there is nowhere in the community for  Alzheimers and dementia patients to go. So we need to fight this…”

She said the staff is not getting the answers they need, and they hope to get the answers today.

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Comments (46)

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  1. watching says:

    My confusion is that in the House of Assembly it was said that the CCU will be closing. Then Minister Gordon Pamplin said “if it closes, it won’t be this week….” which one is it? Is the CCU closing or not? And if so, what is the plan for the patients? and what is the plan for the staff? will they be redistributed through the hospital or to the rest homes? More ambiguity and unanswered questions from the OBA.

    • Double Standards says:

      Pretty sure she said that it will be closing and it will take up to 2 years. The reason for the timeline is to ensure that all patients are suitably accomodated at other facilities.

      Not that hard to decipher, especially given the fact that she said that word-for-word in her press release.

      • watching says:

        So why did she say “IF the CCU is to close…”

        if it is an inevitability she then should have said “When the CCU closes…”


      • Tracy says:

        The minister also said that both unions are aware and that was not true! They heard about it in the media like the staff did! OBA needs to stop with there lies about this! They don’t care about the seniors!

      • Raymond Ray says:

        I believe we’ll see it closing in due time and as the Minister has stated it will not happen today this year or even next year but not until all are relocated elsewhere and the staff hired throughout the various nursing homes Island-wide. What is so damn difficult to understand here? Contrary to the CCU Protest I suggest each of you take a trip down there to see the care / facilities condition and then express an honest opinion by seeing one of your family member residing there or god forbid, you having to live there :-(

  2. god1st says:

    excellent!!! excellent!!!bravo bravo!!! I look forward to voting for the progressive labour party at the next election , a party that has our seniors best interest.

    • bun out says:

      whats zane payin you?!

      • Tracy says:

        What is OBA/UBP paying you? The Minister and Mrs. Jackson are both ….!

    • Teacher Teacher says:

      Ya right, at the expense of everyone else?

    • Deliverance says:

      I wonder how many PLP supporters have just dumped their elderly relatives up there? Now they’ll have to act like a real family and look after and PAY for their elderly’s care THEMSELVES!

      • Joonya says:


      • Toodle-oo says:

        @ Deliverance , interesting observation .
        I had a visit from an old friend (a PLP diehard) the other day ,on holiday in Bermuda I might add.
        She and her family dumped their mother in the CCU over 10 years ago. She needs a little looking after , true , but nothing near what should be the standard for full time admittance to the CCU.
        The large , once immaculate , family homestead now has all the offspring living in it for free while it’s crying out for maintenance.
        She and her siblings are now FULL of OBA conspiracy theories now that there’s a possibility that they’ll have to pay out of their own pockets.

        Bermuda boy below .. agree.

        @ ZuluWarrior below , also agree . But the same question has to be asked of all these locals/biu members who’ve been nothing but a thorn in the side of the hotel owners for decades claiming they’ve been raking in millions off of the backs of the employees. Well why haven’t they opened up their own hotel yet ?

      • Tracy says:

        OBA members have family on CCU AS WELL! So tell them pay for there love ones as well!

    • d.o. says:

      vote for who you want, didn’t think you knew of any other party

  3. cba says:

    Didn’t the Government make it clear that it wouldn’t close until suitable alternatives were found?

    • SoMuchMore says:

      yep thats what i thought. its not going to be next week or the week after people hello.

  4. Teacher Teacher says:

    As hot as it is today, you might want to walk from BIU to KEMH, just in case.

  5. Bermuda boy says:

    What are you marching for, KEMH are doing the right thing. The only ones to march will be the ones that don’t want to look after their elderly people and would rather get someone else to do it….FOR FREE.
    It’s not my responsibility…IT’S YOURS, deal with it.

    • Tracy says:

      If you don’t know whats going on then close your mouth! I hope that you never get old and have to be looked after!

  6. Family Man says:

    Judging from the photo, I think a walk from KEMH to the BIU is an excellent idea.

    • d.o. says:

      better have the ambulance ready it’s hot and they look super fit.

    • LadyB says:


    • Family Man says:

      Bernews deleted my comment about exercise being good for you!!


  7. Nuffin but da Truth says:

    LMAO!!!…you are doing this all wrong!

    get a load of beds on wheels with folk in them and then do a demo’ march to the House on the Hill when the Ministers are all there..

    THEN LEAVE THE BEDS THERE! let them deal with that..

    don’t forget to take your bedfolk back with you as the Ministers wouldn’t know what to do nor care a dam either!

  8. SOSS says:

    Had I known there was to be a march I would have been there.

    No one is mentioning what a wonderful job the staff at
    CCU and ARDU do every day of the year. Yes, the physical facility
    itself is a total disgrace. But the care, love and genuine
    compassion that the staff show to their patients needs the highest

    • huh? says:

      @SOSS – doing a ‘wonderful job’ does not necessitate the facility being open.

      • SOSS says:

        @huh…you are absolutely right. Still the staff have done their best and have had to endure working in that diabolically dreadful deteriorating facility that should have been upgraded years ago.

  9. Tommy Chong says:

    They should be marching on the insurance companies instead. People pay a major lifetime portion of their wages to these companies to get less then squat back in return when they turn 65. If government allowed everyone a choice to opt out of insurance those who did & still kept themselves fit & healthy would be much better off when they became a senior. Annually I don’t even use a quarter of what I pay out to insurance but I still pay lots out of pocket for dental & GP checkups each year.

    • gmsgms says:

      You obviously have no idea how insurance works.

      • Tommy Chong says:

        Sure I know how insurance works! It’s simple, the insurance customers pay a premium & the insurance company invests the premiums & make a huge roi on them. In bermuda where insurance purchase is compulsory upon full time employment these companies make a mint since the premiums paid outnumber the claims made & even outnumber the amount paid out on the claims that are made since insurance hardly ever offers full coverage.

    • MJ says:

      So cancel it then!
      But I hope you don’t ever get in an accident or get very sick. You will eat those words. I have one annual check up a year, and two dental cleanings and that is it! I don’t use medication and have been fortunate enough to be in relatively good health. However, years ago I was in a near fatal accident that involved me being flown out, an extensive hospital stay overseas, additional time here in the hospital and lots of therapy. I could live to be 250 years old and pay for insurance for the rest of my life and the insurance company wouldn’t break even.

      I hope you never NEED your insurance, but Tommy, be greatful that you have it!

      • Tommy Chong says:

        So cancel it then? You must either think I’m self employed or I missed the news that there was an amendment in Bermuda’s insurance act.

        I’m happy for you that you have a great insurance plan but my life experience with insurance was not the same. When a loved one of mine suddenly became ill & had to be flown out it took weeks before their insurance agreed they would cover what had to be done so my loved one stayed suffering at king edward till they did. Once I got a lawyer involved the insurance decided to come thru & they were air ambulance out. My loved one came in the hospital walking & conscious & fought most of their time in but went out through ICU unconscious because it was too late. They never made it back alive. To pour salt in an open wound I received a letter from the medical facility abroad a year after the death of my relative saying their insurance refused to pay the bill. When I contacted the insurance they blamed the facility saying the bill was sent after the deceased’s plan was closed. I again had to get a lawyer involved but the money paid out to the lawyer was well worth putting the crook insurance in their place. I realize the doctor at kemh was also in fault for this since both he & the insurance couldn’t get their selves straight. I guess this is why I have two hands & on each a third finger from the pinky that I can raise to both of them.

  10. ZuluWarrior says:

    Here’s an idea……………. Why don’t these carers come together with a business plan to open their own “care home” that way they don’t lose their jobs, they become part of the solution instead of wasting energy on a “march”! No one wants to see people losing their jobs and I am sure everyone wants the elderly to be well looked after – but people you have to start thinking “outside the box” this world is changing and you either change with it or you get left behind!

    And to “God1st” or Betty! Get a life, try (I know it’s hard) to be part of the solution instead of being part of the problem.

  11. JONO says:

    KEMH has a plan for older people…Gordon Ward is now not a Medical Ward. It has been redesignated as Alternate Level of Care Ward. Someone ask the average age of patients there and the time they have been in the hospital…some hundreds of days….

  12. RawOnion says:

    Silly action by these workers. The health minister clearly stated what the plan was and that their jobs are safe until the seniors are relocated. If anything, there will always be seniors around in need of care and they’re profession is secure just not at the hospital. Not to offend these workers but they did look dopey walking as their energies should have been focused on redeveloping themselves to make them more marketable for a position at a private facility…..they have up to two years to do so.

    • Tracy says:

      You are just as stupid as the OBA! The march was for the lies that they are saying! 1. They don’t know where the news paper got it from 2. The CEO stated back in April that it is just a rumor and CCU will not be closing!

    • I don't get it says:

      I don’t get it. They say that they are marching for the patients, how can you march, who is caring for the patients? Many of them left the patients unattended, and yes those that are opposed to the closure need to look at the condition of both CCU, and the attitudes of some of the individuals that work there.

  13. Yes I said it!! says:

    To move the current patients to another facility is just another way of saying they’re waiting for spaces to free up at other rest homes which (1) makes the wait time longer for others on the waiting list and (2) doesn’t address the issue of there being a lack of care facilities available for those in need at prices they/their families can afford!!! A solution might be to open a off-site facility run by the hospital which can accommodate the same clientele currently on CCU.

  14. Pastor Syl says:

    If there were easy answers as to what to do with our seniors and the staff of CCU and ARDU, it would be done already. This problem with the deteriorating “infrastructure” of the Old Hospital has been an issue for at least 15 years, and probably longer. I, for one, am glad that Minister Pamplin is attempting to meet it head on, which is FAR more than has been done since my mother was there starting in 1997.

    No-one has criticized the staff. The possible closure has nothing whatsoever to do with quality of care. The facility is substandard.
    I don’t understand why people think a march is necessary. Do they WANT the elderly and infirm to be living in those conditions? This doesn’t even make sense…except to once again raise the suspicion that there is a segment of our community that is seeking to undermine our government in any way it can.

    • Tracy says:

      Why don’t you go and look at the units…. They are not as bad as they are saying! If it was really that bad then why sre they waiting for two years to move them?

  15. What a joke says:

    Again dumb uneducated bloggers’

  16. Alvin Williams says:

    Just one more example of the anti-Bermudian; one term OBA government plan to dismantle the social contract.
    The continue unfolding of this government’s so-called shared sacrifice to be borne by those least able to endure it. The workers were right to protest. This government speaks out of both sides of it’s mouth and to think that it’s labor minister Fahy recently went to the caribbean and return
    spouting a claim that he wants to built better labor relations anc contacts down there; when it is here in Bermuda where better relations between workers and this government should be built.

    • Nuffin but da Truth says:

      Alvin Williams is a Bermudian with a chip on his shoulder the size of a boulder,he spouts out crap to anyone that is daft enough to listen or read!
      (and he cannot type worth a dam either!).

    • R@s cl@d says:

      you know you are simple.right sir ?

    • MJ says:

      So why did the PLP push to be a member of Caricom?! Where you as vocal about that when it involved the PLP? I doubt it Alvin! Would you rather the minister say he was looking to worsen labour relations? If he did you would freak out! C’mon Alvin – you can’t have it both ways? Don’t complain, just to complain!