JIS News

Story Highlights

  • The blood-storage capacity at the Percy Junor Hospital in Spalding, Manchester, has been significantly boosted with the acquisition of a specialised compact refrigerator valued at $1,092,648.84.
  • With the acquisition, Percy Junor Hospital can now store 60 units of blood, up from 15 units.
  • Finance and the Public Service Minister and North East Manchester Member of Parliament, Hon. Audley Shaw, who attended the handover ceremony, lauded JAIFA’s philanthropic effort, which, he said, is worthy of emulation across the wider society.

The blood-storage capacity at the Percy Junor Hospital in Spalding, Manchester, has been significantly boosted with the acquisition of a specialised compact refrigerator valued at $1,092,648.84.

The purchase was initiated by the Jamaica Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors Limited (JAIFA), which provided $500,000, with the remainder of the sum coming from the Southern Regional Health Authority (SRHA), which has administrative responsibility for public medical institutions in Clarendon, Manchester and St. Elizabeth.

With the acquisition, Percy Junor Hospital can now store 60 units of blood, up from 15 units.

The new refrigerator was formally handed over to the hospital’s Chief Executive Officer, Carlton Nichols, and Senior Medical Officer, Dr. Carlos Wilson, by JAIFA President, Hugh Meredith, during a presentation ceremony at the institution on Tuesday, March 28.

Finance and the Public Service Minister and North East Manchester Member of Parliament, Hon. Audley Shaw, who attended the handover ceremony, lauded JAIFA’s philanthropic effort, which, he said, is worthy of emulation across the wider society.

“We need, in Jamaica, to develop a greater propensity for philanthropic activities. This is something that is well developed in other countries… and we need to do more of that in Jamaica… we need to reach out,” he pointed out.

He also hailed SRHA’s support, and praised the hospital’s staff for their dedication to consistently pursuing excellence in healthcare delivery.

Chairman of the SRHA, Wayne Chen, in expressing gratitude, assured JAIFA that “your very generous contribution will be put to very good use”.

Dr. Wilson, in his remarks, said the new refrigerator will enhance the hospital’s efficiency in providing blood for patients.

“Currently, what happens is that we have to be sending to the (National Blood Transfusion Service in Kingston) several times a week… to get blood that has been assigned to us. With this machine, it cuts that down. It means that blood will be more readily available to the patients who need it… and the key thing is that this new machine stores blood at a safe temperature,” he explained.

Mr. Nichols, in expressing gratitude, said the hospital is looking forward “to an ongoing relationship with JAIFA that will unlock even more doors as we work together to make Percy Junor Hospital the leading healthcare facility in the Caribbean”.

The JAIFA President, for his part, described the presentation as “momentous” for the association.

“It is important to us that (for) the communities we serve, that we give back to them. So we are extremely happy to be making this presentation,” he noted.

Immediate Past President of JAIFA, Joel Dixon, who initiated the project during his tenure, praised the organisation’s 800-odd members, who, he said, were instrumental in raising the funds to purchase the machine.

“We emphasised to them the need to give and give generously, and that they did. So, thanks to our members for their generous contributions,” he added.

Expressions of gratitude also came from Manchester Health Services Parish Manager, Earl McLaughlin, who was Percy Junor’s Chief Executive Officer at the project’s outset, and President of the Friends of Percy Junor Hospital, Doreen Evans.