Min. Cummings conducts assessment of MoPH healthcare facilities
DPI, Guyana, Thursday, September 21, 2017.
As the Ministry of Public Health nears completion of its 2018 budget, Minister within the Ministry of Public Health, Dr. Karen Cummings saw it fit to assess primary health care facilities in Georgetown. The evaluation is to determine the needs of the health facilities and have them added to the ministry’s 2018 budget.
Minister Cummings and her team visited the Lodge, Sophia and Agricola Health Centres to have firsthand interaction with staff and some of the patients. The Minister said the intention of these visits is to bring “tangible solutions to the problems they (staff) are facing.” After inspecting each of these facilities, the Minister noted that they are all affected by a shortage of drugs and other medical supplies. She emphasised that this will soon be rectified.
“I was happy to let them know that I was advised that between October 15 to January 1 we will have our emergency supplies that were more or less procured, as well as the procurement of the drugs that were procured for 2017 that’s still behind. So we are hoping with our new procurement unit coming on board we will be delivering those drugs.”
Cummings added that expansion of these facilities may be considered. Each health centre caters to a large catchment area which means they provide services to more than 50,000 patients collectively. In the short term, new additions can be done before year end while other major capital expenditure works can be factored into the 2018 budget.
“Where it is possible we will expand, it’s coming at a point in time where we have our budget cycle and we are considering what we’re putting in the 2018 budget. That’s why I’m visiting so that we can see what else we need to include in our budget for 2018. But some are low-hanging fruits which we can deliver in a short space of time so as to improve the condition of the service of our staff members.”
Hinting at the 2018 budget, Minister Cummings eagerly noted that the ministry’s account promises to be more patient-centred. She also noted that it should cater for the improvement of the services offered at primary health facilities. The ministry will also focus heavily on preventative care.
“The bottom line is that we need to have healthy people and healthy communities so we do all in our power from the Ministry of Public Health to see how we can definitely improve the service delivery to the people of these communities.” Minister Cummings said.
By: Delicia Haynes