Work is far advanced on three of the four Centres of Excellence for primary health care, being developed by the Government.
This was announced by Minister of Health, Hon. Dr. Fenton Ferguson, during his contribution to the 2013/14 Sectoral Debate in the House of Representatives on June 25.
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The three structures currently being enhanced are the Isaac Barrant Health Centre in St. Thomas; Darliston Health Centre in Westmoreland; and Santa Cruz Health Centre in St. Elizabeth.
“Cabinet has approved the award of the contract for the renovation of the fourth – the Claremont Health Centre in St. Ann – and work should begin very soon,” the Minister informed.
Improvement to the facilities included expanding the waiting areas, to make them more customer friendly, and upgrading the diagnostic services to support screening and treatment of patients. In addition, health promotion and education programmes will be offered; efficient and effective pharmacy services will also be available, as well as dental services.
The number of health professionals working in these Centres of Excellence will be increased and a web-based electronic Health Information System will be introduced, which will establish the platform for tele-medicine services. The opening hours of the centres will also be extended.
On another matter, Dr. Ferguson informed that the Ministry has now received the concept paper for the Child and Adolescent Hospital in western Jamaica.
“We will be submitting this to the Development Bank of Jamaica to invite private participation after internal review,” he said.
Contact: Alecia Smith-Edwards