Public Health Minister tours Cardiac Intensive Care Unit, GPHC

(GEORGETOWN– April 10, 2017) – PUBLIC Health Minister Volda Lawrence wants the semi-autonomous Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC) adopt as blueprint for other types of services it offers the public the model used by the Cardiac Intensive Care Unit (CICU).

Lawrence made the observation during a tour of the modern facility housed at the top floor of the city referral institution where she viewed the progress of the CICU which is part of the Guyana Programme to Advance Cardiac Care (GPACC), in partnership with the Libin Cardiovascular Institute and Global Health and International Partnerships/University of Calgary, the MOPH and the GPHC.

“I am extremely happy by the accommodation made by the Hospital administration to ensure that this particular unit can be established and at high efficiency levels. I believe we can use this as a role model for other aspects of health care at the GPHC,” Lawrence said.

Minister of Public Health, Volda Lawrence interacts with Dr. J Wayne Warnica in the presence of Ms. Kesaundra Alves and Mr. Sheik Amir.

The GPACC was developed and implemented under the directions of University of Calgary specialists Drs Debra Issac,  Clinical Professor of Medicine and Cardiology and J. Wayne Warnica, Emeritus Professor of Cardiac Sciences and Medicine, University of Calgary Alberta, Canada in partnership with Dr Mahendra Carpen, Head of Cardiology and Resident Cardiologist  attached to the Caribbean Heart Institute (CHI).

“There are some of the things that we note that are low hanging fruits that can be addressed, for example the shortage of the personnel especially since they are being trained”, said Lawrence.

She thanked Canada for choosing Guyana to establish the modern facility.

The CICU was redevelop into a fully functioning unit which now has a total of 13 beds, a significant increase from the 4 beds it initially started with in mid-2016.

Warnica explained that ever since the establishment of the CICU patients have been privileged to specialised treatment and care.

“We put through more than 50 patients a month and most of them are very sick”, he said.

According to Warnica, the GPACC became fully operational in June 2016. During his stint at the GPHC, his team would have managed and treated thousands of patients suffering from cardiovascular diseases, the youngest patient being fourteen years of age.

The GPACC aims at advancing cardiac care for adults and children in a sustainable way, and build capacity in the public health system in Guyana through provision of clinical cardiac services along with education of Guyanese physicians, nurses, pharmacists, echosonographers, and other allied health providers working as part of the cardiac team.

Meanwhile, the Minister noted that the MOPH will be working closely with a Committee to ensure that the establishment of the Dr Yesu Persaud Medical Centre gets on stream at the earliest date.

“We believe that such a facility will enable the hospital and its staff and also the university students to benefit more from what’s been done here. I am happy that we can provide the services where person can come here and get the attention and go back to their family” the government MP said.

She is concerned about care patients receive after discharge from hospitals across the country and reminded that that Community Health Workers (CHWs) have a very important role to play at the primary health care facilities since ‘aftercare’ is of vital importance to every patient.

“We have to ensure that when persons return to their community they don’t go back to the traditional medicine but continue to access the kind of care they need. Many times we as a people are not cognisant of how important step by step process is”.

Present at the tour were  Ms. Kesaundra Alves,  Chairperson of the GPHC Board; Mr. Sheik Amir, Director of Medical and Professional Services; Mr. Allan Johnson, GPHC Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Dr J. Wayne Warnica.