Log In

Reset Password

Oyinloye quits abruptly as CMO

Moving on: Ayoola Oyinloye has stepped down as Chief Medical Officer (File photograph)

Ayoola Oyinloye, the Chief Medical Officer, has stepped down after three years in the post.

Dr Oyinloye was appointed by the Ministry of Health in August 2020, just months after the first cases of Covid-19 were recorded on the island. Over the next two years, he helped to devise the Government’s strategy for containing the virus.

An experienced epidemiologist, Dr Oyinloye also became a public figure during the pandemic, frequently appearing at government press conferences to answer technical questions about the virus.

Kim Wilson, the Minister of Health, thanked Dr Oyinloye for his dedication and commitment.

Ms Wilson said: “I want to express my heartfelt gratitude for Dr Oyinloye's incredible contributions during his time at the Ministry of Health.

“His dedication, hard work and positive attitude have left an indelible mark on all of us at the Ministry of Health. I am particularly grateful for his expert guidance and invaluable assistance during the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Dr Ayo was key to our pandemic response. After Dr Cheryl Peek-Ball retired, Dr Ayo jumped in and helped us navigate the challenges of the pandemic. Our medical community and the people of Bermuda were fortunate to have his exceptional leadership. We will miss Dr Ayo and wish him all the best.”

According to a Ministry of Health spokeswoman, Dr Oyinloye has stepped down “for personal reasons”.

Before doing so, he submitted a report on the state of the island’s healthcare system.

In the 63-page document, Dr Oyinloye noted that social inequalities were creating a two-tier system, with those worse off getting less effective treatments — even though they were most in need.

He said: “Socioeconomic disparities are driving unequal social determinants for health, particularly for the most vulnerable groups in society, whilst the current healthcare system is exacerbating these inequalities through the inverse care law. Those with the greatest health needs appear to have the least access to the healthcare system.”

Dr Oyinloye took aim at the way medical treatments were paid for through insurance policies, which the poor struggled to afford.

He said: “Substantial numbers of the population are either uninsured or have access only to basic health insurance benefits.”

He said that the 2016 census identified 8 per cent of the population as uninsured, with a further 17 per cent only having basic coverage.

But he said worsening unemployment during Covid-19 has led to revised estimates, with as much as 12 per cent of the population being uninsured and a further 23 per cent having only basic cover or unaffordable insurance premiums.

“The fact that insurance is linked to employment status may mean that those with health problems that are significant enough to remove them from the labour force suffer a double burden as they may lose access to their insurance benefits.”

Dr Oyinloye pointed out that the island lacked sufficient up-to-date, population-wide data to draw firm conclusions in his report.

He concluded: “Bermuda now stands at a crossroads with enormous opportunities for tackling health inequalities.

“Covid-19 has identified Bermuda’s vulnerabilities. The Bermuda Health Strategy 2022-2028 and Universal Health Coverage programme present a chance for Bermuda to reform its health system to become fairer, more effective and better value for money for all who live in Bermuda.

“The opportunity is ours to grasp to ensure Bermuda can achieve ‘healthy people in healthy communities’.”

You must be Registered or to post comment or to vote.

Published August 17, 2023 at 8:00 am (Updated August 17, 2023 at 8:04 am)

Oyinloye quits abruptly as CMO

What you
Need to
1. For a smooth experience with our commenting system we recommend that you use Internet Explorer 10 or higher, Firefox or Chrome Browsers. Additionally please clear both your browser's cache and cookies - How do I clear my cache and cookies?
2. Please respect the use of this community forum and its users.
3. Any poster that insults, threatens or verbally abuses another member, uses defamatory language, or deliberately disrupts discussions will be banned.
4. Users who violate the Terms of Service or any commenting rules will be banned.
5. Please stay on topic. "Trolling" to incite emotional responses and disrupt conversations will be deleted.
6. To understand further what is and isn't allowed and the actions we may take, please read our Terms of Service
7. To report breaches of the Terms of Service use the flag icon