JIS News

Story Highlights

  • The public health system has received a boost to its stock of Intravenous Fluids (IV), with a donation valued at $1.75 million from local charity Food For the Poor (FFP).
  • The items were handed over to Minister of Health, Hon. Dr. Fenton Ferguson on August 13, at FFP’s offices in Spanish Town, St. Catherine.
  • he donation came weeks after reports of a worldwide shortage of the fluids at which time, FFP’s Florida office sourced a batch from European suppliers as a gift to the people of Jamaica.

The public health system has received a boost to its stock of Intravenous Fluids (IV), with a donation valued at $1.75 million from local charity Food For the Poor (FFP).

The items were handed over to Minister of Health, Hon. Dr. Fenton Ferguson on August 13, at FFP’s offices in Spanish Town, St. Catherine.

The donation came weeks after reports of a worldwide shortage of the fluids at which time, FFP’s Florida office sourced a batch from European suppliers as a gift to the people of Jamaica.

Minister Ferguson noted that although the health facilities did not run out of the fluids, the National Health Fund (NHF) “worked proactively …so that patients would not be affected, and we managed the system across several hospitals to ensure that they all had stocks at all point in time”.

He said that within a short time after hearing about the shortage, FFP contacted the Ministry and indicated that they would provide support of sourcing the fluids for the health sector.

“We are thankful to have you as a partner in health that we can count on. This will go a far way in adding to our present resources, and I acknowledge the support of Food for the Poor Inc., located in Florida,” he stated.

Minister Ferguson informed that in 2013, FFP donated 86 containers of medical items to the health sector with a value of some $3.4 billion, which included pharmaceuticals, suction machines, nebulizers, and blood pressure machines, medical supplies such as gauze, syringes, needles, furniture, wheelchairs and stretchers.

“I have very deep admiration for the agency for its continued assistance, especially its focus on vulnerable areas and groups. We appreciate these partnerships and welcome others, who may be able to work with us. The development of public/private partnerships to move Jamaica forward is a tenet of our National Development Plan, as well as this Administration’s Manifesto,” Dr. Ferguson said.

IV fluids are critical to saving lives during an emergency. They are used for moderate to severe cases of dehydration, during invasive operations, among other things.