More Jamaicans Seeking Healthcare at Clinics

Photo: Adrian Walker Minister of Health, Dr. the Hon. Christopher Tufton, making his contribution to the 2018/19 Sectoral Debate in the House of Representatives on June 5.

Story Highlights

  • More Jamaicans are seeking healthcare at clinics, with statistics showing an increase in visits to such facilities last year while hospital visits decreased.
  • Of the 2,971,271 visits made to public health facilities between January and December 2017, a total of 1,724,859 were made to public health centres, representing a 10 per cent increase over 2016.
  • This is according to information in the ‘Vitals: A Quarterly Report of the Ministry of Health’, tabled in the House of Representatives on June 5 by Portfolio Minister, Dr. the Hon. Christopher Tufton.

More Jamaicans are seeking healthcare at clinics, with statistics showing an increase in visits to such facilities last year while hospital visits decreased.

Of the 2,971,271 visits made to public health facilities between January and December 2017, a total of 1,724,859 were made to public health centres, representing a 10 per cent increase over 2016.

This is according to information in the ‘Vitals: A Quarterly Report of the Ministry of Health’, tabled in the House of Representatives on June 5 by Portfolio Minister, Dr. the Hon. Christopher Tufton.

The report indicates that some 620,058 persons went to the accident and emergency/casualty departments of hospitals, which was a seven per cent decrease in visits compared to January to December 2016.

Almost half (45 per cent) of the visits to the accident and emergency/casualty departments were for complications related to hypertension, diabetes mellitus, cardiovascular disease and renal disease.

Paediatric cases and surgical cases accounted for 14 per cent and eight per cent of visits, respectively.

The document also noted that 626,354 persons went to the hospital speciality outpatient departments. This represented a four per cent decrease in visitors compared to January to December 2017.

“The increase in visits to health centres and the decrease in visits to accident and emergency/casualty department was a desirable change and is believed to be partially attributable to the reduced waiting time initiative, which was implemented in September 2016,” the report stated.

Overall, visits to public health facilities between January and December 2017, increased by three per cent over the same period in 2016.

JIS Social