|News Release Primary Health Care Remains Top Priority for 2010|
ST. GEORGE’S, GRENADA, January 20, 2010 – Primary healthcare will remain the number one priority in 2010 for the Ministry of Health, which is being allocated EC$55.7 million this year.
The ministry’s allocation was announced in the $678.9 million budget that was presented January 15 in parliament by Hon. Nazim Burke, Minister of Finance, Planning and the Economy.
Health Minster, Senator Ann Peters, was among those who attended the presentation of the Estimates of Revenue and Expenditure, the second budget of the National Democratic Congress since it formed the government on July 8, 2008.
She said that her ministry had identified four priorities for the coming year, including positioning itself to implement new primary healthcare strategies.
The core principles of the strategies, said Sen. Peters, revolve around community participation. It’s getting individuals to take responsibility for their health with guidance and assistance from the Ministry of Health, she explained.
Sen. Peters said the Health Ministry will seek to apply structures and models that have been “tried and tested,’’ with the aim of improving and increasing the quality and quantity of services offered at community health facilities.
Minister Peters also disclosed that discussions are about start on a reviewing of Grenada’s mental health legislation. The legislation will be incorporated into the primary healthcare strategy.
She added that with respect to the main General Hospital in St. George’s, the focus will be on making the facility safe, sound, practicable and functional for patients, visitors and staff.
At the same time, the Ministry of Health will continue its dialogue with private partners, including St. Georges University, for the construction of a teaching hospital on the island, said Sen. Peters.
She said the $55.7 million allocated for healthcare will be combined with funding that will be obtained from international agencies such as World Health Organization and the Pan American Health Organization.
The Ministry’s four priorities for 2010 are to:
Strengthen primary healthcare
Integrate mental health services into community health services
Establish health information and billing and admission systems
Develop health physical infrastructures, including the General Hospital and Gouyave Health Centre
Grenadian Doctors providing health services as part of a primary health care project in to primary school students in St. Andrew in 2009