Minister of Health, Dr. Fenton Ferguson says he will be having regular meetings with the various groups in the public health sector – at least one meeting per quarter – to discuss measures that can be put in place to improve delivery of service and efficiency of the sector.
A meeting was held at the Knutsford Court hotel with approximately 27 public health sector groups on Friday, September 11, 2015 to update them on the actions taken before and since the audit of the Regional Health Authorities and the continuing work of the Ministry of Health to develop and modernize the health sector.
He said there was a general understanding of the reasons for not publicly releasing the names of facilities pin-pointed in the audit but the focus must now be on collectively addressing the challenges.
Dr. Ferguson added that all the audits have been and will be further discussed with staff at the local level and action plans developed and implemented to address the gaps identified.
“The Ministry of Health will continue to provide support and monitoring to the Regional Health Authorities. For the first time we have a team dedicated to reforming the health sector. We did a projection up to 2030 after an analysis of the burden of illness. Then we looked at the programmes that would be needed and how the health services should be structured,” Dr. Ferguson said.
He added that “we should be signing the 10 year development plan for the health sector very soon. This plan will require the participation and cooperation of all the groups. We have to work together if there is to be a meaningful change in the way we operate as a health sector,” Dr. Ferguson said.
The groups which were in attendance at the meeting include the Medical Association of Jamaica, Jamaica Medical Doctors’ Association, Association of Government Medical Consultants, Government Dental Surgeons Association, Nurses Association of Jamaica, Jamaica Enrolled Nurses Association, Jamaica Midwives Association, Jamaica Association of Nurse Anaesthetists, Jamaica Association of Nurse Practitioners, Association of Dental Assistants, Association of Medical Technologists, Council of Paramedics, Association of Dietetics & Nutrition, Jamaica Dental Nurses Association, Contact Investigators, Jamaica Physiotherapy Association, Jamaica Society of Radiographers, Pharmacy Technicians Association, Jamaica Association of Public Health Inspectors, Jamaica Association of Public Sector Pharmacists, Jamaica Medical Records Association, Scientific Officers, Jamaica Association of Local Government Officers, Jamaica Civil Service Association, Jamaica Workers Union, National Workers Union and the Bustamante Industrial Trade Union.