Members of the island’s medical fraternity are mourning the sudden death of an intern assigned to the Annotto Bay Hospital in St Mary on Wednesday. 

Friends and close colleagues have identified him as 26-year-old Dr Yakeev Morris.

He reportedly became ill while attending to a patient at the hospital, reports reaching Loop News suggest. He later died.

Health and Wellness Minister Dr Christopher Tufton has expressed his condolences to family members and friends and staff at the hospital.

He explained to Loop News on Thursday afternoon that he is awaiting a report into the intern’s death. He said he suspects that “an autopsy will have to be done” to determine the cause.

Regional Director for the North East Regional Health Authority, Dr Patrick Wheatle, told Loop News, that the intern had started working at the hospital in July. 

“Despite the fact that he was new to the facility, within that short space of time, if you knew of the gentleman, he was very energetic and a very nice person. He automatically became part of their family. So at this point in time, the facility has lost one of their own,” he explained. 

In expressing his condolences to the doctor’s family, the NERHA regional director indicated that grief counselling has been provided to staff members at the Annotto Bay Hospital. 

“… [My] condolences to the family. We are presently providing grief counselling to the Annotto Bay family and teams at the facility should also be reaching out to the family as well,” he said. 

Dr Wheatle also said a report into the intern’s death will be prepared and sent to the Ministry of Health, and investigations are ongoing.

Meanwhile, the Jamaica Medical Students’ Association (JMSA), through its Twitter account, expressed condolences to Morris’ family late Wednesday night. 

“Today we mourn the loss of a new medical intern, Yakeev Morris. He served the JAMSA Council as Special Project Coordinator in 2017-18. Rest well Yakeev. Condolences to his family,” the tweet said. 

Several persons have paid tribute to Dr Morris on social media outlets, describing him as a phenomenal person. 

On Facebook, Rashaun Stewart said the medical intern would live on in the hearts of everyone.

He further posted, “Dr Yakeev ‘Foska Oats’ Morris was a phenomenal person. The outpouring of love, support and positivity for him in the wake of his untimely passing show just how remarkable he truly was.” 

Stewart continued: “You may be gone, but you will forever live on in our hearts. Rest In Peace, my brother. This pain cuts deep but I have confidence that you’re resting easy and you’re at peace now. You are surely missed.”

The tributes, in the meantime, were equally emotional on Twitter. 

Demar Brown tweeted: “Life is too short and precious. Live good with everyone. RIP Dr Yakeev Morris. You just needed 5 mins of conversation with him to become a friend. Worked hard for 5 years to earn your degree and a couple weeks after you passed away. Sigh 🕊.” 

Another Twitter user shared: “Condolences to the family, friends and classmates of Dr Morris. When a colleague dies, especially so young and at the beginning of their career, it has a profound impact on everyone in the profession.”

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