Three Princeville residents to be trained as health workers

─ one volunteered for nine years in health and education sectors

─ part of narrowing the gap in hinterland health

DPI, Guyana, Friday, August 2, 2019

Lloyd Henrito has been serving as a volunteer in the health sector for nine years in Princeville where he lives.

Henrito, who is a University of Guyana graduate, trained teacher and retired headmaster, shared with Public Health Minister, Hon. Volda Lawrence his wish to be regularised and fully employed with the region’s health department and continue to give service to his community.

He explained that many years ago, he had submitted all the necessary documents needed for his employment. “I’ve worked with the infectious diseases unit and NAPS, and I have been the unofficial health worker for this village but I have only been a volunteer… twice I sent out my credentials to Georgetown and nothing.”

A decision was taken at the meeting for Henrito to be sent to Georgetown promptly to start a Community Health Worker training course. Permanent Secretary of the Public Health Ministry, Colette Adams who shared the news, accompanied the minister to a community meeting in Princeville. At the meeting, villagers highlighted the need for improved healthcare delivery.

Starting August 8, this training exercise will run for six months after which Henrito will return to man the health post in Princeville. He will also be accompanied by two other residents desirous of benefitting from the training, who will assist at the health post. They will be housed in Georgetown while they undergo the training. Free transportation and meals will be provided for their upkeep.

In the meantime, Minister Lawrence has arranged for a temporary system to be put in place in Henrito’s’ absence. Persons attending the clinic will have free transportation once a month to attend the clinic in Mahdia.

The minister remarked that the ministry has been looking to train individuals willing to work to give service to their community. She explained that training local persons to work in their community proves to be a more viable option since they are familiar with the culture within the community.

She also referred to CHWs being trained in other parts of the country. “When we say we want to train people from the villages it’s not just talk; it’s already in action… We recognise we have been training everybody on the coast then we’re asking them to come to the hinterland and provide service.”

The Ministry of Public Health’s vision is to build the capacity of its human resources to be more effective, especially in far-flung areas, through the utilisation of persons from within their respective communities to render health services.

The CHWs can benefit from additional training and upgrade their skills by becoming professional nurses by first accessing training in Basic Midwifery.

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