The Port Morant health centre in St. Thomas was officially re-opened to the public on May 3, following an extensive renovation exercise.
The centre, which was closed for repairs in January 2011, was re-opened by Health Minister, Hon. Dr. Fenton Ferguson.
Speaking at the ceremony, Dr. Ferguson said the health centre will assist in providing community based interventions to tackle lifestyle and other illnesses for over nine communities.
“This is a small step towards our goal of advancing the social and economic development of our people. The Government will continue to deliver on our commitment to make strategic investments in primary health care and provide a basket of services at the community level,” he explained.
The Minister emphasised that this is the only way the country can move towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDG), in an effort to make Jamaica the place of choice to live, to work, raise families, and to do business.
Dr. Ferguson encouraged members of the community to play their part in protecting the facility. “Do not allow thieves and others to destroy what was built up for your benefit and the benefit of our children,” he said.
Some of the services being offered at the facility include: family planning, pre and post natal care, child health, nutrition, health promotion, environmental health and food safety.
The renovation was funded by the National Health Fund (NHF), at a cost of over $5 million, and is part of the NHF-financed $300 million rehabilitation of primary healthcare infrastructure programme initiated by the Ministry of Health.
The scope of work included relocation and renovation of the pharmacy, expansion of public health inspectors’ offices, renovation of storage area, painting of the facility and ceiling repair.
By Chris Patterson, JIS Reporter