Beautiful Virgin Islands

Saturday, Mar 25, 2023

Premier to look into reports of lack of medical equipment at AO Shirley

Premier to look into reports of lack of medical equipment at AO Shirley

Premier and Minister of Finance Dr Natalio Wheatley said he will take a look into why the medical room at the AO Shirley Recreational Grounds in Road Town is yet to be outfitted with proper equipment since being constructed more than a decade ago.

The Premier was only informed of the situation by a member of the local media during his last one-on-one press conference. He was also told that officials made numerous promises to outfit the room over the years.

Dr Wheatley was further advised to visit the facility and speak with various coaches to get a proper assessment of the situation athletes face regarding proper rehabilitation after training or injury.

The Premier expressed his concerns and said he would try his best to ensure athletes have proper personnel and facilities to perform at their optimum best.

“I certainly will [look into the medical room]. You know, I too would be concerned about that because of course, you know anything can happen on the track. We want to make sure that you have the facilities necessary to get the proper treatment if needed,” Dr Wheatley said.

No team physiotherapist at international championship

The Premier was also informed that the two-member athletic team that went to the World Championships did not have physiotherapy on hand. Dr Wheatley was further told that Commonwealth Games and NACAC Games Champion, Kyron McMaster required treatment before his event and the BVI’s team had to rely on another country to assist him. He clipped his hamstring in the opening round and was eventually pulled from the semi-finals of the 400-metre hurdles event at the World Champs.

While the Premier agreed it was not feasible for athletes to attend championships without proper personnel, he said he hoped the money collected from the money service levy could help to rectify the problem.

“I’m hopeful that the money that he’s now made available to the money services – I think the fund has somewhere around $6 million or something like that divided into different categories. So, out of that money, we should be able to find some to be able to properly fund having the physiotherapist, the psychologist, the masseuse. Whatever it is, we should be able to find the money to be able to do that for those trips,” Dr Wheatley stated.

“If there is a challenge, then the Minister of Sports, the Permanent Secretary, the Director of Youth Affairs and Sports, the President of the Athletics Association or somebody can come to me; can make known to me and I certainly will help however I can,” he added.


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