The Child Health and Development Passport, which contains information about the growth and development of a child from birth to 17, was officially implemented today (September 1), during a press briefing, held at the Victoria Jubilee Hospital, downtown Kingston.
In his remarks, Minister of Education, Hon. Andrew Holness, explained that the passport, which was developed in collaboration with his Ministry and the Ministry of Health, begins the process of tracking the health and developmental stages of the child.
Minister of Education, Hon. Andrew Holness, holds up a copy of the Child Health and Development Passport, at the official implementation of the document at the Victoria Jubilee Hospital today (September 1).
“We now have the technology and the capacity to know what is happening in the population. So, if every child has this document which details their health and education status, then we know exactly what is happening in the entire population,” the Minister said.
“I would like to appeal to parents to assist us in ensuring that the passport is properly utilised, so that your child can receive all the benefits intended. Do not leave the hospital without one after the birth of your child. Take the passport with you when you visit the health clinic, family doctor, dental practitioner and a new school,” Mr. Spencer advised.
Minister of Health, Hon Rudyard Spencer (right), accepts a patient monitor from President, Kiwanis Club of New Kingston, Suzanne Leslie-Bailey, at the official implementation of the Child Health and Development Passport, at the Victoria Jubilee Hospital today (September 1). Looking on is Senior Medical Officer, Victoria Jubilee Hospital, Dr. Rudolph Stevens.
He also expressed appreciation to the relevant stakeholders, especially the Early Childhood Commission, for their efforts to get the initiative going.
“I am truly happy that this has become a reality and the Ministry of Health is committed to doing everything in our power to ensure its successful implementation and use. After today, we will have a way to track various aspects of the children’s development by using one document,” Mr. Spencer said.
The passport was developed in response to the Ministry of Health’s need to address the holistic health of the nation’s children and to meet the obligations under the Millennium Development Goals, which require a reduction in infant and child mortality rates by two thirds by 2015.