JIS News

A new health centre is to be constructed in Christiana, Manchester, at a cost of approximately $32 million.
Construction is being facilitated by the Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF) and the Culture, Health, Arts, Sports and Education (CHASE) Fund, with the JSIF providing some $22 million and the CHASE Fund, $10 million.
The new centre will be built on the site of the old clinic and construction is projected to be completed in eight months.
At the contract signing and groundbreaking ceremony, held on November 20, in Christiana, Technical Officer with the JSIF, Mr. Craig Lawrence, said the Type Three health centre would serve several communities in North East Manchester as well as communities in the neighbouring parishes of Trelawny and Clarendon.
“It will offer a variety of health services to all communities, such as the issuing of food handlers’ permits, mental health care, family planning, child health and medical clinics, among others services,” he said.
He explained that there is a second component to the project, where a team consisting of five persons, who are direct stakeholders of the health centre, will attend workshops on training in disaster preparedness, risk management and infrastructure maintenance.
The Christiana Health Centre is one of the health centres to be reconstructed under the Hurricane Dean Emergency Recovery Loan (ERL) project that was established in October 2007 by the Government, through a US$10 million (J$890 million) loan from the World Bank and implemented by JSIF.
Managing Director of JSIF, Mrs. Scarlette Gillings, explained that the project also includes work on roads and schools.
“Specifically, there are 19 health centres under the ERL project. The loan has seen the complete rehabilitation of 11 health centres across the island. Five are being constructed as we meet and three of the largest ones remain to be constructed,” she said.
Special Representative from the World Bank, Dr. Badrul Haque, said the Christiana Health Centre is “a part of the Government’s game plan to ensure that adults are well taken care of and the young are a strong human capital,” and that as Jamaicans, “we should be proud that Jamaica is at the forefront when it comes to social policies.”
“Other countries now in this global economic crisis are wishing that they have such a system in place,” he said.
He pointed out that this investment by the Government in human capital, would allow Jamaicans to compete with the rest of the world.
On completion, the health centre will consist of two examination rooms, dental and medical staff office, medical records and registration room, waiting area, three rest rooms, kitchen, laboratory, public health department and a pharmacy.

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