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KINGSTON — Minister of Health, Hon Rudyard Spencer, says that there has been an increase in the number of persons accessing care at public health centres in Portmore, St. Catherine.

Speaking at the official reopening of the Waterford Health Centre, on Thursday August 25, in St. Catherine, the Minister said that health centre utilisation in Portmore had moved from 55,394 persons in 2009 to 59, 056 persons in 2010.

“This is an encouraging sign, as we want more persons to utilize the services that are closer to their communities, instead of overloading hospitals with cases that can be dealt with at the community level,” Mr. Spencer said.

Mr Spencer encouraged the community to take proper care of the health facility, which was refurbished at a cost of $873,000.

“Please treat the health workers with respect and, in return, I ask that our health workers provide reliable and quality service to every patient,” he stated.

Parish Manager for St. Catherine Health Services, Howard Lynch, thanked the National Health Fund (NHF) for financing the refurbishing of the health centre, a key facility in the parish’s network of 26 health centres.

“The refurbishing of this Type II health centre has improved the physical atmosphere for the staff members that work here, and it has also improved conditions for the patients who use this specific facility,” Mr. Lynch said.

Member of Parliament for St. Catherine South Eastern, Colin Fagan, also expressed appreciation to NHF for its support.

More than 40 health centres across the island have been rehabilitated, under a $300 million Primary Health Care renewal programme financed by the NHF.

                                                           

By Latonya Linton, JIS Reporter