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Study recommends 10-year development plan for health- care system

Wednesday, July 02, 2014    

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AN Inter-American Development Bank (IDB)-funded technical study conducted on Jamaica's health-care system has recommended the creation of a 10-year strategic development plan.

The study focused on the 'Reform and Financing of Jamaica's Health System', which is aiming to provide increased access by persons seeking affordable and quality health care, Health Minister Dr Fenton Ferguson told the House of Representatives in his 2014/15 Sectoral Debate presentation.

The health minister told the House that the study also recommended the development of a strategy for primary health-care renewal, as well as implementation of projects to reduce the impact of non-communicable diseases.

He told the House that a request for the provision of technical cooperation and funding support for the undertaking has been submitted to the IDB, adding that the ministry should receive approval soon.

Dr Ferguson, meanwhile, told parliamentarians that the island's four primary health care centres of excellence are part of Government's overall plan to strengthen Jamaica's health system. These institutions have been established at the Claremont Health Centre, St Ann; Santa Cruz Health Centre, St Elizabeth; Darliston Health Centre, Westmoreland; and Isaac Barrant Health Centre, St Thomas.

According to the minister, $268 million in additional expenditure is earmarked to undertake phase two of the centres of excellence programme. This phase, he indicated, will entail additional infrastructure improvements, and acquisition of equipment. Financing is being provided by the National Health Fund.

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