Advertisement
Feature
Minister of Health, Dr. the Hon. Christopher Tufton (right), in conversation with (from left): President of the East Jamaica Conference of Seventh Day Adventists (SDA), Pastor Eric Nathan; Health Ministries Director at the Jamaica Union Conference, Dudley Hosin; Executive Secretary at the Jamaica Union Conference, Dr. Merrick Walker, and the organisation’s President, Pastor Everett Brown, at the launch of the church’s Mission 2019, at its Constant Spring Road headquarters, in St. Andrew, on January 8.
Photo: Yhomo Hutchinson

Story Highlights

  • Members of the Seventh Day Adventist (SDA) church are to assist the Health Ministry to improve the infrastructure of some 100 health centres across the island, and to spread its healthy lifestyle message to reduce non-communicable diseases (NCDs).
  • President of the Jamaica Union of the SDA Conference, Pastor Everett Brown, says the church decided to support the Ministry of Health through the ‘Adopt a Clinic’ programme, because they want the health and well-being of all Jamaicans to improve.
  • He tells JIS News that the organisation’s 750 congregations across the island are being encouraged to assist in “improving or effecting repairs to the physical structure, such as painting, repairs and supplying equipment.”

Members of the Seventh Day Adventist (SDA) church are to assist the Health Ministry to improve the infrastructure of some 100 health centres across the island, and to spread its healthy lifestyle message to reduce non-communicable diseases (NCDs).

President of the Jamaica Union of the SDA Conference, Pastor Everett Brown, says the church decided to support the Ministry of Health through the ‘Adopt a Clinic’ programme, because they want the health and well-being of all Jamaicans to improve.

He tells JIS News that the organisation’s 750 congregations across the island are being encouraged to assist in “improving or effecting repairs to the physical structure, such as painting, repairs and supplying equipment.”

Addressing the SDA’s Mission 2019 launch, held at the East Jamaica Conference of SDA, Constant Spring Road headquarters, in St. Andrew, on January 8, Pastor Brown said that members and leaders in the church have readily responded to the initiative.

In addition to the infrastructural support, personnel attached to the Adventist Health Professional Association (AHPA), will be volunteering on a monthly basis to provide counselling and health tips, as well as in the preparation of healthy meals for persons when they visit the clinics.

Reacting to the gesture, Minister of Health, Dr. the Hon. Christopher Tufton, says it is the largest single adoption of clinics since the programme was formally launched in 2017.

“To the extent that the Adventist church will be adopting 100 clinics, this will be significant in helping persons to make them their first stop in seeking medical care,” he says.

Dr. Tufton adds that the SDA Mission 2019, which focuses on the prevention of NCDs, is welcomed and comes at a time “when we require all hands on deck to tackle the threat of cardiovascular diseases, diabetes and cancers.”

He also lauds the group for combining the Ministry’s ‘Jamaica Moves’ with its ‘Let’s Move” initiative, to motivate and mobilise its members to organise community and senior citizen exercise clubs.

Pastor Brown says other church groups are welcomed to support the partnership, as it is about “health improvement” of Jamaicans.

Meanwhile, the SDA’s Health Ministries Director for Central Jamaica, Damian Chambers, tells JIS News that his personnel are eager to “touch people where it matters,” and that two major health expos will be held in Portmore on January 20, and May Pen, Clarendon, on February 3.

For Eastern Jamaica, the Health Ministries Director, Leonard Steele, says that recently, over 800 persons were impacted at a health expo held at the St. William Grant Park, and that on February 7 another expo will be staged in Morant Bay, and at the Good Samaritan Inn, in Kingston, on February 3.

There will also be heightened activities in Western Jamaica, according to Health Ministries Director, Egnal Grant, with a health expo slated for January 27 at Savanna-la-Mar High School, commencing at 6:30 a.m.; a 5K health walk, February 2, at Sam Sharpe Square, St. James, starting at 3:00 p.m., St. Elizabeth will have an expo on February 7, at the Santa Cruz SDA church; while residents in Hanover can attend their expo on February 3, at the Jockey Factory.

The ‘Adopt-A-Clinic’ project seeks to attract stakeholders who will adopt the facilities and provide the necessary basic resources to better enable the institutions to deliver improved and quality services to persons at the community level.