Public Health Sector welcomes Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist

─ will address the holistic health of the younger population

─ more persons to be trained in this field

DPI, Guyana, Monday, August 26, 2019

The Ministry of Public Health has employed a Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist to craft initiatives in ensuring health is addressed holistically. The addition of this profession to the public health sector is welcomed as it caters for more targeted interventions in the area of mental health.

With a first degree specialising in Child Psychiatry, Dr. Jenese October is the first local doctor to provide this specific service to Guyana. She returned from Cuba with a wealth of theoretical and practical knowledge, which will help in addressing psychiatric cases in children. On August 26, the mental health professional met with Public Health Minister, Hon. Volda Lawrence.

As she prepares to be deployed in the public health sector, Dr. October said she is eager to work on improving the health of children and adolescents countrywide.

“In this particular area where mental health is concerned, this speciality is very important because before we become adults we pass through stages; we’re children, we’re adolescents then we become young adults so in order for us to have adults who can be an asset to our community and our country as a whole we need to ensure they are healthy and health is not only the absence of physical illness it is also mental well-being,” Dr. October remarked.

She explained that good health is represented by a person that is physically fit, free from illness and injury and is mentally stable or of a sound mind. Child and Adolescent Psychiatry specifically target diagnosis, treatment and prevention of mental disorders in children and teens.

Minister Lawrence disclosed that there is another doctor currently undergoing training in this specialised field. The minister added that the Ministry of Public Health will be working to ensure there is a cadre of these professionals trained and available in the public health sector.

“We have a list of areas where we have indicated to our staff within (the sector) and to several other ministries where we are looking to train persons in this specific skilled area… Over the next five years, we hope to have persons attend training every year so that we can build our cadre of qualified staff in this particular field,” Minister Lawrence explained.

Also, sitting in on this meeting was National Director of Pharmacies, O’neil Atkins.

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