JIS News

The Registrar General’s Department (RGD) is reporting 100 per cent success in the registration of births in the parishes of St. James and Trelawny last year, which Manager for the western region, Daynielle Clarke, is crediting to the beside registration programme.
She told JIS News that between April to November 2009, there were 3,393 birth occurrences and all were documented by the department. The figure includes births in public and private hospitals and clinics.
“For the parish of Trelawny, for the period April to November 2009, we had 394 births that occurred, and we have all 394 registered. From this number, we have 362 babies that have been named,” she informed.
St. James recorded 2, 999 births for the eight-month period and all were registered. “We have 98 per cent of those babies that have been named, which represent a figure of 2, 946,” Miss Clarke said.
As it relates to the number of fathers adding their names to the birth records, she told JIS News that more were coming forward but the numbers need to improve. Of the 394 births in Trelawny, 213 fathers added their particulars, while in St. James, 71 per cent of fathers or 2,142 added their names at the time of registration.
Miss Clarke is encouraging fathers to enter their particulars on the birth certificate at the time of registration to avoid the costs to do so at a later date.
The agency issues free birth certificates to parents once the child is registered with a name within six weeks of birth. These certificates are delivered within three months of the date of birth.
The RGD’s western region manager told JIS News that her agency has an ongoing public education programme at all health centres across the parishes, to inform expectant mothers as to how to go about registering their babies at birth.
She is advising expectant mothers to always be prepared with two names in the event that they are not sure of the gender of the child, and for fathers to continue to play a supportive role and ensure that their names are entered on the registration documents.
The RGD introduced its bedside registration programme in 2007 at the island’s hospitals, to capture all births and to reduce the number of nameless children.

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