Government’s policy to deliver healthcare from communities being met says Hamilton

Basseterre, St. Kitts (September 9, 2016) — Federal Minister with responsibility for Health, the Hon Eugene Hamilton, has said that through partnerships his government’s overall policy to deliver healthcare from the communities is being met.

Minister Hamilton, who also has responsibilities for Agriculture, National Health Insurance, Human Settlement, Community Development, Gender Affairs, Social Services, Cooperatives, and Lands, made the remarks Friday September 9 at the JNH General Hospital when he received on behalf of the government 25 cardiac monitors and four cardiac defibrillators.

The equipment that will be used at the JNF General Hospital, Pogson Hospital and in eleven Health Centres was bought through the proceeds of a concert organised by the Windsor University/Joseph N. France General Hospital Concert team that helped raise over $50,000 and a donation of US$50,000 from ASmallWorld Foundation of Europe.

“The 25 cardiac monitors and four cardiac defibrillators I understand will be distributed to eleven health centres in St. Kitts and also placed in theatre, emergency room and on the medical/surgical/maternity wards,” said Hon Hamilton.

“Distribution to the eleven health centres is in keeping with my government’s overall policy to deliver healthcare from the communities; from the communities where people live, where they work and where they play.”

He thanked the Acting Chief Medical Officer Dr Cameron Wilkinson, who along with Dr Osborne had started the fundraising concerts for the JNF General Hospital four years ago with the students of the Windsor Medical University.

Present at the handing over ceremony were the various donors, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health, Mrs Ionie Liburd-Willett, Health Advisor Mrs Eugenie Condor, Director of Institutional Nursing Services Mrs Sonia Daly-Finley, and Acting Operations Manager, Ms Gail Cranstoun.

Hon Hamilton thanked St. Kitts and Nevis High Commissioner to London, His Excellency Kevin Isaac, who approached Mr Patrick Liotard-Vogt, chairman of ASmallWorld Foundation that committed support to healthcare services of US$50,000 a year for the next three years.

“When I was in Europe in May last year I took the opportunity to speak with HE Kevin Isaac who is the St. Kitts-Nevis High Commissioner in London,” said Hon Hamilton. “I spoke with him about the prospects of finding donors who could support our health endeavours. I am pleased today to thank him for his efforts so far.”

Apart from the monetary support from ASmallWorld, Mr Liotard-Vogt wrote to Minister Hamilton and said: “I will see if I can get some additional funding from partner organisations. I had lunch after our meeting with a visiting friend from Switzerland who chairs a large organisation and showed interest in a substantial donation for additional equipment and ambulances.” According to Minister Hamilton the donation will be valued at US$250,000.

The Hon Eugene Hamilton said he had also talked to High Commissioner Kevin Isaac in London and said to him that he was looking for two wheelchairs to persons whose needs had impressed him, Mr St. Clair Mills who has been an amputee for more than 25 years and Reginald Jones who is a double amputee.

“High Commissioner Kevin Isaac has done more than I imagined,” said Hon Hamilton. “Last week I received not two but six wheelchairs putting me in a position to provide some assistance to St. Kitts and Nevis Association of Persons with Disabilities (SKNAPD).”

He added that the consignment he received from High Commissioner Isaac did not only contain the wheelchairs but there were ten pairs of crutches, ten walkers with wheels, and three boxes of incontinence pads.

“When the wheelchairs will be directed to the St. Kitts and Nevis Association of Persons with Disabilities (SKNAPD), the crutches, the walkers and the incontinence pads will be used here at the JNF hospital,” said Hon Hamilton. The four wheelchairs were received by the SKNAPD Secretary Ms Mary Clarke who was present at the function.

“I should say a big thank you to HE Kevin Isaac High Commissioner in London for his efforts in helping the Ministry of Health and through him to the donors in Birmingham who he mentioned who assisted him in putting this package together for us here in St. Kitts and Nevis. I am advised it is not the first time he has done this.”

He thanked members of the Windsor University/Joseph N. France General Hospital concert and said when he attended their concert in June this year he was blown away, and promised that, “As long as I am in St. Kitts I will attend this function every year, and I will do my best to ensure that not only the nurses get their tickets in advance, but other people will do so as well.”

Giving the vote of thanks was the Director of Institutional Nursing Services Mrs Sonia Daly-Finley who said: “I can assure you that the medical equipment will enhance our performance and the quality of patient care, especially our critically ill patients.”

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