The Caribbean Community (CARICOM) is to bring the operations of five regional bodies under one organisation, to form the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CAPHA).
Prime Minister of St. Kitts and Nevis, Hon. Dr. Denzil Douglas addresses the press conference which he convened at the Rose Hall Resort and Spa in Montego Bay St. James, where Heads are assembled for the final day of the 31st Meeting of the Conference of Government of CARICOM, which started on July 4.
The announcement was made by Prime Minister of St. Kitts and Nevis, Hon. Dr. Denzil Douglas, at a media briefing on July 7, on the final day of the 31st Regular Meeting of the Conference of Heads CARICOM, at the Rose Hall Resort and Spa, in Montego Bay, St. James.
They are: the Caribbean Epidemiology Centre (CAREC), the Caribbean Food and Nutrition Institute (CFNI), Caribbean Environmental Health Institute (CEHI), Caribbean Health Research Council (CHRC), and the Caribbean Regional Drug Testing Laboratory (CRDTL).
Dr. Douglas said CARICOM wanted to rationalise the agencies and bring them under one management structure to increase efficiency and effectiveness of the Caribbean’s public health delivery programme.
Dr. Douglas, who has prime ministerial responsibility for human resource development, health, and HIV/AIDS, said he had briefed his colleagues on the progress made in creating CAPHA, regarding funding, location and other operational matters.
He informed that as it relates to funding for the new agency, CARICOM Heads have decided to pursue a funding model involving the setting up of a trust fund with several financial and development instruments. Dr. Douglas disclosed that it could cost up to US$50 million to bring the Agency into operation, but said most of this would come from the redirection of funds from the five bodies, which are to be merged.
Meanwhile, he said discussions are to take place with new Trinidadian Prime Minister, Hon. Kamla Persad-Bissessar, to ensure that she is also in support of the entity being located in the twin-island republic.