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PAHO team speaks commendably of Ministry of Health and Montserrat

The Director of PAHO, Dr. Godfrey Xuereb and his high level team, hosted and accompanied by the Hon. Delmaude Ryan of the Ministry of Health and Social Services  on January 12, 2016 reported to the media on the “Strategic Programme Initiatives (SPI) of the Ministry of Health and Social Services.

At a press conference aimed at informing the public of major decisions coming out of these high-level meetings, PS Elijah Silcott on Thursday, introduced the team from the Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO) who during a two-day visit to the island were to bring the Ministry’s SPIs into focus. 

They met with the Honourable Minister and Senior Officials from the Ministry of Health to discuss and examine: The strategic Initiatives agreed to with PAHO and the other UK Overseas Territories; The Ministry of Health Strategic Initiatives 2017 – 2019; the New Hospital development plans, the Health’s human resources and the Health Information System.

The team of Dr. Godfrey Xuereb, PAHO/WHO Representative for Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean, Dr. Peter Crowley, Advisor, Health Systems and Services and Ms. Sally Edwards, Advisor, Sustainable Development and Environmental Health also facilitated a Community Based Workshop held at the Credit Union Hall in Brades on Tuesday 10th aimed at raising awareness and support for zika control through reduction of the Aedes aegypti mosquito.

Reporting on the workshop, Dr. Xuereb said it was part of their third activity; “…a town hall meeting and information sharing activity where we invited faith based organizations. We invited other partners to not only give them the information but also for them to share information with us and with the Ministry regarding the issue of mosquitoes and mosquito control. There are at least three diseases that are common in the Caribbean: dengue fever, chikungunya and more recently the zika of virus which are spread by the same mosquito.”

On the main emphasis of the visit, Dr. Xuereb with supporting comments from the Minister spoke of, “The evaluation that is currently being done on the needs (of the hospital) is critical,” saying also that “PAHO will be supporting the Ministry of Health – on non-communicable diseases – also critical because that is the evidence that is required to then identify what are the needs of the country. The other critical aspect, “is the sustainability of anything that is developed.” 

“On  these he said they needed to, “and we had long discussions with the C.M.O with the P.S., on human resources, equipment and how do you main and sustain it – with the intelligence with the continuing professional development of the human resources…”

Sitting in with the Minister and the PAHO team, Dr. Lowell Lewis the Chief Medical Officer also commented on the visit: “… this is a very helpful and structural visit and we’re very pleased to have experts among us. It was reassuring hearing from them that they were very pleased with some of the information and work coming out of Montserrat and that’s credit to the staff here. In several instances you said we were ahead of many of the other territories in sort of what we’re doing.”

The CMO also said: “I’m looking forward to acting on their advice in rebuilding the primary health care program we have and we have showed some support for the proposals we have for staff training and for making Montserrat a possible location for other people in the region or even further field to come… Search and Rescue combined with primary health care community based prevention health care programs. We’re very grateful for that visit, thank you.”

Meanwhile Minister Ryan noting her agreement with the PAHO Director in his report spoke of the “The deeper environment assessment according to how the ( new hospital) sites are ranked…” noting Hilltop being that site first and we’ve also got some commitment in terms of moving along with that EIA in terms of funding that.”

The Minister said that with all the town hall consultations and more behind them, Cabinet had accepted to work with Hill Top as the new hospital site. “So work with that has already in terms of the paper work and getting persons in place and all of that is being discussed as we speak.”

 She then refers to the functional reviews which is where the deeper analysis comes in with the functional reviews and the health financing review which the firm Mott McDonald has been awarded the contract for that exercise which should begin in February

“With those happening and a greater focus in terms of the planning and development for the human resources as well as the health information system, all of that together will give us an idea of where we are in terms of the strengthening of the health system in Montserrat,” she concluded.

This visit strengthens established ties with PAHO and WHO as well as garners regional support for major health plans on island.

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A Moment with the Registrar of Lands

The Director of PAHO, Dr. Godfrey Xuereb and his high level team, hosted and accompanied by the Hon. Delmaude Ryan of the Ministry of Health and Social Services  on January 12, 2016 reported to the media on the “Strategic Programme Initiatives (SPI) of the Ministry of Health and Social Services.

At a press conference aimed at informing the public of major decisions coming out of these high-level meetings, PS Elijah Silcott on Thursday, introduced the team from the Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO) who during a two-day visit to the island were to bring the Ministry’s SPIs into focus. 

They met with the Honourable Minister and Senior Officials from the Ministry of Health to discuss and examine: The strategic Initiatives agreed to with PAHO and the other UK Overseas Territories; The Ministry of Health Strategic Initiatives 2017 – 2019; the New Hospital development plans, the Health’s human resources and the Health Information System.

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The team of Dr. Godfrey Xuereb, PAHO/WHO Representative for Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean, Dr. Peter Crowley, Advisor, Health Systems and Services and Ms. Sally Edwards, Advisor, Sustainable Development and Environmental Health also facilitated a Community Based Workshop held at the Credit Union Hall in Brades on Tuesday 10th aimed at raising awareness and support for zika control through reduction of the Aedes aegypti mosquito.

Reporting on the workshop, Dr. Xuereb said it was part of their third activity; “…a town hall meeting and information sharing activity where we invited faith based organizations. We invited other partners to not only give them the information but also for them to share information with us and with the Ministry regarding the issue of mosquitoes and mosquito control. There are at least three diseases that are common in the Caribbean: dengue fever, chikungunya and more recently the zika of virus which are spread by the same mosquito.”

On the main emphasis of the visit, Dr. Xuereb with supporting comments from the Minister spoke of, “The evaluation that is currently being done on the needs (of the hospital) is critical,” saying also that “PAHO will be supporting the Ministry of Health – on non-communicable diseases – also critical because that is the evidence that is required to then identify what are the needs of the country. The other critical aspect, “is the sustainability of anything that is developed.” 

“On  these he said they needed to, “and we had long discussions with the C.M.O with the P.S., on human resources, equipment and how do you main and sustain it – with the intelligence with the continuing professional development of the human resources…”

Sitting in with the Minister and the PAHO team, Dr. Lowell Lewis the Chief Medical Officer also commented on the visit: “… this is a very helpful and structural visit and we’re very pleased to have experts among us. It was reassuring hearing from them that they were very pleased with some of the information and work coming out of Montserrat and that’s credit to the staff here. In several instances you said we were ahead of many of the other territories in sort of what we’re doing.”

The CMO also said: “I’m looking forward to acting on their advice in rebuilding the primary health care program we have and we have showed some support for the proposals we have for staff training and for making Montserrat a possible location for other people in the region or even further field to come… Search and Rescue combined with primary health care community based prevention health care programs. We’re very grateful for that visit, thank you.”

Meanwhile Minister Ryan noting her agreement with the PAHO Director in his report spoke of the “The deeper environment assessment according to how the ( new hospital) sites are ranked…” noting Hilltop being that site first and we’ve also got some commitment in terms of moving along with that EIA in terms of funding that.”

The Minister said that with all the town hall consultations and more behind them, Cabinet had accepted to work with Hill Top as the new hospital site. “So work with that has already in terms of the paper work and getting persons in place and all of that is being discussed as we speak.”

 She then refers to the functional reviews which is where the deeper analysis comes in with the functional reviews and the health financing review which the firm Mott McDonald has been awarded the contract for that exercise which should begin in February

“With those happening and a greater focus in terms of the planning and development for the human resources as well as the health information system, all of that together will give us an idea of where we are in terms of the strengthening of the health system in Montserrat,” she concluded.

This visit strengthens established ties with PAHO and WHO as well as garners regional support for major health plans on island.