NIA CHARLESTOWN NEVIS (December 10, 2020) – Hon. Hazel Brandy-Williams, Junior Minister of Health in the Nevis Island Administration (NIA), says despite financial constraints the government plans to undertake several health care projects in 2021.
The Junior Health Minister unveiled the prospective projects during the 2020 Budget Debate in the Nevis Island Assembly on December 09, 2020. She pointed out however, that 2021 will continue to be a challenging year financially.
“Providing that funding is available this is what we hope to see from the Ministry of Health and Gender Affairs in the new year.
“We endeavour to start the process for a new Charlestown Health Centre, and in year one we are looking at consultation with the people, drawing the plans, engaging the engineers, and so we have budgeted an amount to take care of that in the first year…
“We will continue to seek funding and collaborate with any funding agencies for a state-of-the-art poly-clinic in Gingerland. The proposal was done this year, so we go to the next step to try and see if we can find funding for that facility,” she said.
Mrs. Brandy-Williams emphasized that these projects will be undertaken in phases.
“It’s a phased approach, one year we do one thing and then the second year, until we get it done. We don’t have unlimited financing and so like anything else…you have to budget,” she said.
Mrs. Brandy Williams further revealed the NIA’s plan to purchase a Computed Tomography (CT) scanner, which will cost approximately US$1.2 million.
She said in the first quarter of 2021 the government is hoping to make the initial down payment on the piece of medical equipment, and has already secured the resources for that payment.
The Junior Minister added that the Ministry of Health intends to continue on-the-job training for staff at the island’s medical facilities which include an initiative involving health professionals from large, busy institutions visiting local facilities to observe healthcare workers on the job. Staff from the Nevis facilities would then visit those institutions to gain experience working in fast-paced medical facilities which treat a greater variety of health issues.
“We are looking at [this] new initiative as part of the rebranding of health service and service at Alexandra [Hospital]…so all this is being put in place so when the new facility is done our people are ready to give the top-notch service that we expect of them,” the Minister said.