JIS News

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  • The Government has agreed to further assist with the education and training of nurses, though the provision of scholarships for tertiary studies.
  • This is in addition to six scholarships, which will be reaffirmed for a maximum of $1 million each.
  • A bus is also to be provided to the NAJ, and arrangements are being made for further security for nurses who leave work at night, Dr. Ferguson said.

The Government has agreed to further assist with the education and training of  nurses, though the provision of scholarships for tertiary studies.

This was revealed by Minister of Health, Hon. Dr. Fenton Ferguson, during a ceremony to sign a Heads of Agreement with the Nurses Association of Jamaica (NAJ), for the contract period 2015 to 2017, at Jamaica House, on October  30.

He said $5 million will be allocated in the 2016/2017 financial year to provide scholarships for nurses’ tertiary education and another $5 million for children of nurses in the public sector.

This is in addition to six scholarships, which will be reaffirmed for a maximum of  $1 million  each.

Dr. Ferguson said nurses will also significantly benefit from a $400 million  project in the 2016/17 financial year, to provide training to health workers over a four-year period.

He noted that an additional 22 nurses trained in neonatal care under the European Union (EU)-funded Programme for the Reduction of Maternal and Child Mortality (PROMAC), will be dispatched to hospitals over the next six months. Twenty nurses have already been deployed in the field since July 2015.

Through the PROMAC project, which focuses on child and adolescent health, training is to be provided for 86 physicians and nurses.

Under the Heads of Agreement signed, the NAJ were also provided with 20 acres of land – 10 acres in Trelawny and 10 acres between St. Mary and St. Thomas.

“I am particularly pleased about the housing arrangement that is a part of this package. As Minister, I know what it is for many of our nurses, with the challenges they have to own a home,” Dr. Ferguson said.

He congratulated the Ministry of Finance for bringing to a closure the negotiations with the nurses.

A bus is also to be provided to the NAJ, and arrangements are being made for further security for nurses who leave work at night, Dr. Ferguson said.