Bahamas News

Sands: Government committed to ensuring right balance of professionals for advancement of healthcare

#Nassau, April 19, 2019 – Bahamas – The Government of The Bahamas is committed to ensuring that the country has the right balance of doctors, nurses and all of the other professionals required for the advancement of healthcare moving forward, Minister of Health Dr. the Hon. Duane E.L. Sands said Monday.

“Our government has recognized the value of a holistic approach to medicine. It is more than just doctors and nurses. In order for us to advance our healthcare system, we need ultrasonographers, radiographers, lab technicians, etcetera.

“You cannot win the championship without a well-balanced team and we recognize that and we are going to change our approach to scholarships and support to ensure that as we move forward, we have a balance of doctors, nurses and all of the other professionals required in healthcare,” Dr. Sands added.

Delivering the Opening Address at the Opening Ceremony for National Medical Laboratory Professionals Week, Dr. Sands said the Government, through the Ministry of Health, has also prioritized the implementation of an Allied Health Programme at the University of The Bahamas, the end result of which should see an increase in the recruitment of additional Bahamian laboratory professionals.

“The Government realizes the many challenges you continue to face — particularly those of you working in our public health system. I know that your profession, like many other health professions in our country, is short-staffed. As I have observed on previous occasions my ministry has prioritized the implementation of an Allied Health Programme at the University of The Bahamas and the first degree offered in such a programme should be a degree in medical technology.

“I urge BAMT (Bahamas Association of Medical Technologists) to work closely with us and with the Ministry of Education to make this objective a reality, allowing for an increase in the recruitment of Bahamian laboratory professionals,” Dr. Sands added.

Dr. Sands said he was also committed to “undertaking a comprehensive evaluation of compensation across the public healthcare system as a necessary element to our approach to healthcare reform.”

“With respect to the issues of salaries, I am going to once again ask for your understanding of the current economic realities experienced by the P.H.A. and our Government, it will take some time to address your financial concerns, however, be assured that we are committed to addressing these matters for you and for health professionals across the board.

“And so Mr. P.S. (Health Permanent Secretary Mr. Marco Rolle) as the Administrative Leader of our Ministry, I commit now to undertake a comprehensive evaluation of compensation across the public healthcare system as a necessary element to our approach to healthcare reform,” Dr. Sands added.

By Matt Maura

Release: BIS

Photo Captions:

Header: Minister of Health, the Hon. Dr. Duane E.L. Sands addressing the Opening Ceremony for National Laboratory Professionals Week held Monday (April 15) at the Food Court, Critical Care Block, Princess Margaret Hospital.  

Insert: A large group of medical laboratory professionals and other healthcare professionals attended the Opening Ceremony for National Laboratory Professionals Week Monday at the Food Court, Critical Care Block, Princess Margaret Hospital.  

(BIS Photo/Raymond A. Bethel, Sr.)

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