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JIS News

Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Registrar General’s Department (RGD), Dr. Patricia Holness, toured the Victoria Jubilee and Kingston Public hospitals, downtown Kingston, on Friday (October 16), observing the institutions’ system of collecting and collating births, deaths and other vital statistics.
Dr. Holness noted that Jamaica is developing a Civil Registration and Vital Statistics Manual, in which all components of the civil registration and vital statistics system will be documented and made available to the public.
“We are observing the process of bedside registration, and how that feeds into the significant improvements in the timeliness of registration. We are also examining the death registry process, to ensure that the manual will really mirror the facts on the ground,” she explained.
Dr. Holness, who is also Jamaica’s Deputy Keeper of the Records, was accompanied on the tour by a consultant from Jacaranda Consulting LLC of Florida in the United States, and officials of the Ministry of Health, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and the Planning Institute of Jamaica (PIOJ).
She told JIS News that the project is being funded by the UNFPA, with support from other agencies, including the PIOJ. RGD, as the body responsible for collating Jamaica’s vital records, will play a major role in the production of the manual.
Jamaica has been developing a multi-agency Vital Statistics Commission (VSC) since 2004. The commission has a mandate to ensure that the country’s vital statistics and civil registration system meets international standards. The programme seeks to strengthen the capacity to collect, manage and use data, and conduct demographic, social and gender analyses for policy development and planning, particularly with regard to migration, brain drain and social and economic surveys.
A comprehensive audit of the civil registration and vital statistics system has commissioned, and is being supported by the Pan American Health Organisation (PAHO).

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