By CECILY ASSON Thursday, January 26 2012
This file photo of Patrick Manning, taken shortly after he lost the 2010 General Election. Theformer prime minister was said to be improving slowly an...
FORMER Prime Minister Patrick Manning was yesterday moved from the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of the San Fernando General Hospital to the High Dependency Unit (HDU), with Health Minister Dr Fuad Khan saying that Manning acknowledged his presence with a smile.
Manning was warded on Monday night after suffering a stroke. Relatives said that shortly after returning to his Sumadh Gardens, Vistabella home from a meeting with constituents at his San Fernando East constituency office, Manning complained of feeling unwell. Some time after 10 pm that night, he was rushed to the Accident and Emergency Department where he was treated and subsequently warded.
Yesterday, Khan told reporters that Manning has shown slight improvement and was removed from ICU to the High Dependency Unit. “He might be about at least five per cent recovered from yesterday (Tuesday),” Dr Khan said.
The HDU is located adjacent to the ICU and patients there are monitored 24 hours by a nurse. Patients also remain connected to a monitor for continuous readings of vital signs. Although they may be transferred out of ICU, patients in the HDU are not deemed well enough to be placed in a normal ward.
Khan also said Manning has begun to swallow, “which is an extremely good sign. He even gave me a thumbs up when I was leaving,” he said. “He is tired, he has gone through a lot, so what is happening, he is able to at least smile. He has smiled, he understands when I speak. I spent a very short time in there and I’ve seen that the recovery is slowly progressing. It is better than yesterday,” Dr Khan said.
Khan was met on his arrival at the hospital by chairman of the South West Regional Health Authority (SWRHA) Dr Lackram Bodoe, SWRHA Chief Executive Officer Anil Gosine and Dr Lester Goetz. Dr Khan was immediately taken to Manning’s room under tight security.
Dr Khan invited members of the media to accompany him on his visit to the ward but warned that reporters and photographers would not be allowed inside the HDU. Dr Khan later spoke to the media .
He said when he was told about Manning’s illness by Dr Bodoe, he indicated to him (Bodoe) that the first 24 hours of a cerebrovascular accident — a stroke — is extremely serious because at that time the survival rate “is touch and go.” Bodoe was told that no visitors except the immediate family should be allowed to visit Manning, Khan said. He added that this decision had to be taken to allow Manning “to recover, rest, and allow the injections and other treatment to kick in.”
He said doctors accomplished what they set out to do and as a result they were able to move Manning from the ICU. “As with all stroke victims, it (progress) will slowly continue until some time as much as 80 percent function returns in about three to four months,” Dr Khan said.
Khan said Manning’s CT scan did not “show anything major” and so he was unable to say if the stroke was related to a brain aneurysm. Manning, Dr Khan said, is not speaking as yet but is coherent and appears to understand what is being said to him.
Khan said as a patient at the SFGH, Manning will receive the best treatment possible at the hospital.
“He is in the best hands and we will be giving him every single thing in this hospital to make him comfortable. I have told Dr Bodoe, ‘no holds,’ whatever Mr Manning wants Dr Bodoe and the SWRHA will be giving him.”
Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar yesterday acknowledged Manning’s contribution to TT.
Speaking in Debe at the Oropouche East Constituency office of Dr Roodal Moonilal, Persad-Bissessar sought to explain why she did not visit the ailing former Prime Minister.
“When I spoke to Mrs Hazel Manning yesterday (Tuesday) she advised me that his visits were restricted to immediate family. I asked my Minister of Health to visit and he did so. I understand that he is also recommending the visits be limited because Mr Manning needs the rest to have a speedy recovery. So, I join the nation in prayers for a speedy recovery for Mr Manning,” Persad- Bissessar said.
Asked if the government would help foot the bill for Manning for medical treatment at foreign institutions, if so required, the Prime Minister said, “I have already said to Mrs Hazel Manning yesterday that in what ever way the State can assist, we will.” The PM was speaking to reporters prior to chairing an inter-ministerial meeting overseeing the San Fernando/Point Fortin Highway project at the Oropouche East constituency office.
Speaking on behalf of the Mannings yesterday was protocol officer of the San Fernando East Constituency, Wendy Lewis who confirmed that the Health Minister did in fact interact with Manning.
“Dr Fuad Khan did visit Mr Manning, obviously he is the Minister of Health and he was allowed to see him.” She however said no visitors except the immediate family members were being allowed into in his room.
“He continues to undergo tests and he is smiling. Mr Manning is going to make a speedy recovery,” Lewis said adding that members of the San Fernando East constituency continues to hold nightly prayer vigils for the former PNM political leader.