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Health fair success with Dr Icilma Fergus team from New York

Dr. Icilma Fergus-Rowe in the black

Various stalls and tents, dealing with testing blood sugar, testing hypertension levels and carrying out various physical checks, demonstrations of what type of health meals one should eat,  all marked the highlights of a ‘Health Fair’ staged by the Ministry of Health.

There were relaxation techniques along with music to support exercises which began about 5.00 p.m. for the fair which started at 10 and ended at 6.00 o’clock, working well with a mix of information, food, physical exercise and some entertainment. Just as was described by the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health, Elijah Silcott.

Minister of Health Colin Riley had announced a possible program, “which will then trigger a clinical partnership with hospitals back in the US so it is possible for us to have our nursing program expand to include students from the US and other parts of the world,” he had said.

Diabetes Check

That resulted in the visit which had been in the making for more than three years , when the Ministry hosted a visiting team led by Montserratian born Dr. Icilma Fergus-Rowe, a cardiologist residing and working in New York,  USA during the week of the Health Fair.

Dr. Fergus-Rowe who is the Director of Cardiovascular Disparities and Associate Professor of medicine at Mount Sinai Medical Centre, was on the mission accompanied by with Jilda Capupo Hansen who is Director of community outreach at the American Society of Hypertension, and Nancy Thomas, a Patient Navigator also at Mount Sinai Medical Centre.

The cardiologist described her visit and explained their commitment and the mission: “…committed towards improving the health and wellness and mortality and mobility of people of an African Diaspora so African Americans which are the ones who live in the United States, also Caribbean Americans and also Africans on the Continent.”

Exercise Time

She continued. “So this is a medical mission where we hope to by screening various risk factors particularly life style risk factors , we’d be able to find out more what the risks are for a heart attack, stroke, heart failure, kidney disease… we’re focusing on high blood pressure hypertension as it is very common, but it’s very silent.”

She explained further that Mount Sinai Medical centre partnered with the American Society of Hypertension to begin with Montserrat. “For our first medical mission, we had contributions from the Association of Black Cardiologist and the American Heart Association,” she said.

She said the mission was primarily, “to bring awareness and education to people ultimately to make an intervention and treatment,” adding that the mission, “entails seeing and diagnosing while valuating and treating patients who have some cardiac disease either suspected or proven; and also to run a couple of diagnoses as well as to our reach into the distant neighbor hoods to people who you wouldn’t expect to come for medical care.”

She noted that they went out to several bars rum shops, grocery stores… they were provided health screening, “and we found very high percentage of people with undiagnosed hypertension,” remaking, “but those who are diagnosed were extremely elevated…”

Jilda Hansen commented on the visit; “We’re thrilled to be here we have done many community outreaches,” pointing out, “this is the first time we have been out of the United States.”

She said she is a New Yorker and, “we have been doing this for about 5 years now, starting New Orleans back in 2008 and we also went to California in San Francisco to a Festival…in New York, several community centers as well as hospitals where we screen anywhere from six to seven hundred people…”

She confirmed Dr. Fergus’ visitation statement. “We have been visiting grocery stores and the people of Montserrat have just been so wonderful they have opened their hearts they have helped us find our way because there has been so many times we’ve gotten lost and we’ve just had a great week here.”

Jilda’s hope was, (at the Health Fair) “that we’re teaching people how to take their blood pressures and to be aware of what hypertension can do to your bodies , can do to your heart, your brain, your kidneys, your eyes…”

The Fair

Minister Colin Riley was quite enamored with the activities at the Health Fair excited at his former St. Patrick’s resident in Dr. Fergus Rowe doing, “consultations while here and taking part in health and wellness day today,” he said.

He said, “part of the visit is to cement a long term relationship with the Ministry and inspire more young people to get involved in the medical practice world…”

Nurse Sharon Greenaway, Health Promotion Coordinator, of the Health Promotion Unit, who very shortly afterward announced she would be leaving the island expressing thanks to coworkers and supporters, revealed that the fair was the second, such.

“The first one was held in 2007,” she said. “And because it was successful we decided to have another one this year.

“in addition we’re trying to prevent chronic diseases such as mental illness, stroke, cancers, heart disease,” concluding,  “we decided to have this health fair to give people information and to do health screening and to help them to get the encouragement to go and get a checkup.”

She, while speaking to TMR informed that the fair would climax with the exercises this afternoon with Mr. Phillip (Subu) Moulcare, which was the case.

“Yes, everything went all right…in spite of a bit of a late start…” she beamed.

She said they had a lot of healthy snacks, “that were so popular, we only charged people $1.00. But as you can see all is gone…we had nutrition, we had the Seventh Day Adventist and all of it is gone; we still have Merle there with the healthy living foods …”

Resource persons at some booths

Some of the participants at the Fair were happy to show off.

“We have an array of the local fruits that you can get we’re trying to encourage people to eat as many local fruits as possible so we have our sugar apple, we have blackberry, you can make drinks with them, avocado plum rose, here we have healthy bean salad, it can not only be used as a salad, but it can be used as a complete meal because it has the beans where you can your protein,” the nutritionists boasted.

Even the First Aiders were on hand. “ Well I know it a health and wellness fair but in spite of us encouraging the people to be healthy, you never know when something will happen so that’s why we’re here in case anybody found someone lying unconscious or not breathing no pulse, we are demonstrating CPR today,”  leading First Aider, Madge Donoghue said.

The Department of Environment Health were pleased with their presence.  “This afternoon we have just a condom demonstration of both male and female condoms. Also we have leaflets on different HIV and STI’s that could be read up on the site. They spoke of having, “condoms, a variety of condoms that we can advise on, or if anybody need different variety let them go to Beni’s – we just have some demonstrations on how to use the condoms,” they offered.

 

 

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A Moment with the Registrar of Lands

Dr. Icilma Fergus-Rowe in the black

Various stalls and tents, dealing with testing blood sugar, testing hypertension levels and carrying out various physical checks, demonstrations of what type of health meals one should eat,  all marked the highlights of a ‘Health Fair’ staged by the Ministry of Health.

There were relaxation techniques along with music to support exercises which began about 5.00 p.m. for the fair which started at 10 and ended at 6.00 o’clock, working well with a mix of information, food, physical exercise and some entertainment. Just as was described by the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health, Elijah Silcott.

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Minister of Health Colin Riley had announced a possible program, “which will then trigger a clinical partnership with hospitals back in the US so it is possible for us to have our nursing program expand to include students from the US and other parts of the world,” he had said.

Diabetes Check

That resulted in the visit which had been in the making for more than three years , when the Ministry hosted a visiting team led by Montserratian born Dr. Icilma Fergus-Rowe, a cardiologist residing and working in New York,  USA during the week of the Health Fair.

Dr. Fergus-Rowe who is the Director of Cardiovascular Disparities and Associate Professor of medicine at Mount Sinai Medical Centre, was on the mission accompanied by with Jilda Capupo Hansen who is Director of community outreach at the American Society of Hypertension, and Nancy Thomas, a Patient Navigator also at Mount Sinai Medical Centre.

The cardiologist described her visit and explained their commitment and the mission: “…committed towards improving the health and wellness and mortality and mobility of people of an African Diaspora so African Americans which are the ones who live in the United States, also Caribbean Americans and also Africans on the Continent.”

Exercise Time

She continued. “So this is a medical mission where we hope to by screening various risk factors particularly life style risk factors , we’d be able to find out more what the risks are for a heart attack, stroke, heart failure, kidney disease… we’re focusing on high blood pressure hypertension as it is very common, but it’s very silent.”

She explained further that Mount Sinai Medical centre partnered with the American Society of Hypertension to begin with Montserrat. “For our first medical mission, we had contributions from the Association of Black Cardiologist and the American Heart Association,” she said.

She said the mission was primarily, “to bring awareness and education to people ultimately to make an intervention and treatment,” adding that the mission, “entails seeing and diagnosing while valuating and treating patients who have some cardiac disease either suspected or proven; and also to run a couple of diagnoses as well as to our reach into the distant neighbor hoods to people who you wouldn’t expect to come for medical care.”

She noted that they went out to several bars rum shops, grocery stores… they were provided health screening, “and we found very high percentage of people with undiagnosed hypertension,” remaking, “but those who are diagnosed were extremely elevated…”

Jilda Hansen commented on the visit; “We’re thrilled to be here we have done many community outreaches,” pointing out, “this is the first time we have been out of the United States.”

She said she is a New Yorker and, “we have been doing this for about 5 years now, starting New Orleans back in 2008 and we also went to California in San Francisco to a Festival…in New York, several community centers as well as hospitals where we screen anywhere from six to seven hundred people…”

She confirmed Dr. Fergus’ visitation statement. “We have been visiting grocery stores and the people of Montserrat have just been so wonderful they have opened their hearts they have helped us find our way because there has been so many times we’ve gotten lost and we’ve just had a great week here.”

Jilda’s hope was, (at the Health Fair) “that we’re teaching people how to take their blood pressures and to be aware of what hypertension can do to your bodies , can do to your heart, your brain, your kidneys, your eyes…”

The Fair

Minister Colin Riley was quite enamored with the activities at the Health Fair excited at his former St. Patrick’s resident in Dr. Fergus Rowe doing, “consultations while here and taking part in health and wellness day today,” he said.

He said, “part of the visit is to cement a long term relationship with the Ministry and inspire more young people to get involved in the medical practice world…”

Nurse Sharon Greenaway, Health Promotion Coordinator, of the Health Promotion Unit, who very shortly afterward announced she would be leaving the island expressing thanks to coworkers and supporters, revealed that the fair was the second, such.

“The first one was held in 2007,” she said. “And because it was successful we decided to have another one this year.

“in addition we’re trying to prevent chronic diseases such as mental illness, stroke, cancers, heart disease,” concluding,  “we decided to have this health fair to give people information and to do health screening and to help them to get the encouragement to go and get a checkup.”

She, while speaking to TMR informed that the fair would climax with the exercises this afternoon with Mr. Phillip (Subu) Moulcare, which was the case.

“Yes, everything went all right…in spite of a bit of a late start…” she beamed.

She said they had a lot of healthy snacks, “that were so popular, we only charged people $1.00. But as you can see all is gone…we had nutrition, we had the Seventh Day Adventist and all of it is gone; we still have Merle there with the healthy living foods …”

Resource persons at some booths

Some of the participants at the Fair were happy to show off.

“We have an array of the local fruits that you can get we’re trying to encourage people to eat as many local fruits as possible so we have our sugar apple, we have blackberry, you can make drinks with them, avocado plum rose, here we have healthy bean salad, it can not only be used as a salad, but it can be used as a complete meal because it has the beans where you can your protein,” the nutritionists boasted.

Even the First Aiders were on hand. “ Well I know it a health and wellness fair but in spite of us encouraging the people to be healthy, you never know when something will happen so that’s why we’re here in case anybody found someone lying unconscious or not breathing no pulse, we are demonstrating CPR today,”  leading First Aider, Madge Donoghue said.

The Department of Environment Health were pleased with their presence.  “This afternoon we have just a condom demonstration of both male and female condoms. Also we have leaflets on different HIV and STI’s that could be read up on the site. They spoke of having, “condoms, a variety of condoms that we can advise on, or if anybody need different variety let them go to Beni’s – we just have some demonstrations on how to use the condoms,” they offered.