Minister of State Phipps Describes New Nursing Documents as Significant

Basseterre, St. Kitts, March 30, 2016 (SKNIS): When the Community Based Health Services (Nurses) Orientation Manual and the Prevention and Control of Tuberculosis Guidelines were launched at the Annual Nurses Reporting Meeting last week, Minister of State with responsibility for Health Honourable Wendy Phipps, described the documents as significant and seminal.

As such, they are one of a kind documents that can influence the future development of nursing in the Federation. Minister Phipps also commended the process used to craft the documents.

“They would have been done by dint of hard work, over time, and by the consultative process,” Minister Phipps said. “Because I seem to recall Dr. Walwyn (Acting Director of Community Based Health Services) especially, commenting on the support that they would have received when the workshop would have been convened in Nevis to get your input, especially on the tuberculosis guidelines and I am very grateful for that. Those represent two documents that I think would be useful not just to be guiding documents for new entrants in community based nursing, but nursing in general, even at the institutional based nursing services as well.”

Minister Phipps elaborated that she would commence discussions in order to have the documents become part of E-Government platform, thus enabling them to be accessed digitally via the Ministry of Health’s section on the Government’s website, She stated her expectation that the documents be continuously upgraded and inclusive of global clients’ demands.

“St. Kitts and Nevis is one of those jurisdictions that is now heavily invested in other areas such as medical tourism, real estate-based investments, largely through the Citizenship By Investment (CBI) Programme,” the Minister responsible for Health said. “And by extension, if people are choosing to make second homes out of relative real estate in St. Kitts and Nevis, we also have to be giving them assurances that when they choose to live or to work or to invest in this jurisdiction, that the quality of healthcare that we could provide for them will be just as good as where they are coming from, or even better, if it is possible.”

Minister Phipps added that she expected the documents to have a major emphasis on health information and health promotion which includes the education advocacy component of the sector.

The importance of the role of the community-based nursing services in terms of its preventative healthcare role was emphasized. Effectively preventative care would enable resources to be spent in other areas.

“We are spending millions of dollars every year in terms of responsive care,” Minister Phipps said. “While it is true, yes, that our biggest cause of death in the Federation is NCDs (Non Communicable Diseases) and related illness, we would like to spend more of our money in terms of infrastructure and support and equipment rather than in trying to make corrective health overtures. So that if we have a healthier nation, we could afford to put more money into infrastructure.”

Career guidance, counselling and the role of home care officers were also addressed by the Minister.

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