Opposition calls for independent probe of Jodiann Fearon’s death

Jodiann Feasron

Leader of the Opposition, Dr Peter Phillips, has called on Prime Minister Andrew Holness to immediately appoint a Commission of Enquiry to look into the circumstances leading to the tragic death of expectant mother Jodiann Fearon within the public sector health care system.

Phillips said in a statement Monday (April 27) that an independent enquiry is necessary to remove any appearance, real or imagined, of a conflict of interest in ferreting out the truth about what precisely happened, leading to Fearon’s death.

Opposition Leader Dr Peter Phillips.

He said this should be separate and apart from the report being compiled by the Chairman of the South East Regional Health Authority (SERHA) for Minister of Health and Wellness, Dr Christopher Tufton.

Phillips said Fearon’s death was not only a personal tragedy but had a deeper dimension as so many institutions mandated to provide health care to Jamaicans, failed to deliver the mandated healthcare she needed in those critical moments.

He said, for full confidence to be restored in the governance arrangements of the country’s public health system and institutions, only a comprehensive independent report would suffice. Phillips said there is precedence for such an enquiry with the Bernard Commission of the mid-1990s which examined the case of the death of a pregnant woman at the Lionel Town Hospital in Clarendon.