PORT ANTONIO — Approximately 200 members of staff of the St. Mary Health Services came out to show off their athletic prowess, while enjoying friendly camaraderie at a fun day held on Friday April 29 at the Westmoreland Oval in Annotto Bay.
The event culminated a series of activities for the parish in celebration of Health Month from April 1 to 30, under the theme: ‘Be alert, disease prevention needs your attention’.
Staff from the four health districts across the parish, Gayle, Highgate, Annotto Bay and Port Maria, were divided into three houses Morgan, Crawford and Cousins, where they engaged in numerous fun-filled competitive events, including sack, sprint, relay, and egg and spoon races, ‘fluffy diva’ and ‘fat man’ races and tug of war.
Individual winners were presented with medals while Cousins, the winning house, received a trophy.
Speaking with JIS News, Parish Manager of St. Mary Health Services, Dr. Isaac Brown, said the fun day was held to give staff from health facilities across the parish, the opportunity to de-stress and interact with each other and the general public in a more relaxed environment.
He said that the health professionals work under stressful conditions, and it is important for them to have “breathing space” and to be mentally and physically prepared at all times.
Dr. Brown expressed appreciation to the public for supporting the month-long activities, which included health checks and cancer screenings; health fair and open day at the Jeffery Town Health Centre; and a community outreach meeting in Richmond.
He said the health care staff were well received in the various communities that they visited.
“We appreciate everyone, who participated in the month of activities, as we seek to improve the delivery of health care to residents of the parish,” he said, adding that evaluation will be done to ensure that next year’s events will be bigger and better.
St. Mary has a total of 30 health centres and two public hospitals – Annotto Bay and Port Maria.
By LORNA WILLIAMS, JIS REGIONAL OFFICE