82 Healthcare Workers Receive Specialised Training

Photo: Michael Sloley Minister of Health, Dr. the Hon. Christopher Tufton (right), shares a light moment with Head of the Delegation of the European Union, Ambassador Malgorzata Wasilewska, during a recognition ceremony for healthcare professionals at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel in New Kingston on December 9. A total of 82 participants were awarded for successfully completing specialised training in infant care and management under the training component of the Programme for the Reduction of Maternal and Child Mortality (PROMAC).

Story Highlights

  • Jamaica’s maternal and neonatal health services are expected to be vastly improved with an additional cohort of trained professionals.
  • A total of 82 healthcare personnel have received specialised training in maternal and infant care and management under the training component of the Programme for the Reduction of Maternal and Child Mortality (PROMAC).
  • They were recognised for their achievements under the programme during a ceremony held at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel in New Kingston on December 9.

Jamaica’s maternal and neonatal health services are expected to be vastly improved with an additional cohort of trained professionals.

A total of 82 healthcare personnel have received specialised training in maternal and infant care and management under the training component of the Programme for the Reduction of Maternal and Child Mortality (PROMAC).

They were recognised for their achievements under the programme during a ceremony held at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel in New Kingston on December 9.

Speaking at the ceremony, Minister of Health, Dr. the Hon. Christopher Tufton, said the training was undertaken as part of steps to upgrade maternal and neonatal health services in Jamaica to world class standards.

“The training of our health care professionals is critical, in terms of ensuring that they are both fully equipped to perform their tasks, and also that they are kept abreast of evolving trends and international best practices,” he said.

Dr. Tufton informed that an estimated $186 million has been spent to date on health professional training initiatives under PROMAC, which has the specific objectives of reducing the incidence of neonatal and maternal deaths; improving the quality of management of high risk pregnancies; and enhancing public awareness and understanding of health care processes and patients’ rights.

“So far, 51 specialist nurses and physicians have benefitted from post graduate training through the University of the West Indies. Training areas include fellowships for consultant physicians in Critical Care, Neonatology and Maternal-Foetal Medicine,” he noted.

In addition, scholarships have been awarded in anaesthesiology, obstetrics and gynaecology and paediatrics for qualified candidates registered in the Doctor of Medicine Programme.  A 10-week intensive course in Obstetric Ultrasound is also being provided to improve the capacity of team members in diagnostics and treatment.

“We are also training four nurse educators through the Masters of Nursing Education programmes. Additionally, 45 nurses have completed or are nearing completion of the Bachelor of Science (BSc) programme in post-basic critical care and post-basic midwifery at the University of Technology (UTech), with an additional 50 nurses to complete training over the next year,” the Minister said.

Dr. Tufton further informed that the Government has embarked on a comprehensive programme to train about 1,000 primary health care workers and 200 community health aides in a number of modules, including neonatal resuscitation, management of high risk pregnancies and customer service.

The training under PROMAC, which is funded by the European Union, is specifically aimed at better enabling participants to deal with the challenges associated with neonatal care and improving the overall efforts to reduce child mortality.

The areas covered included Maternal Foetal Medicine, Neonatology and Critical Care: Neonatal Nutrition, Post Basic Critical Care and Midwifery.

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