Big boost to St Ann's Bay Hospital Physiotherapy Department

Big boost to St Ann's Bay Hospital Physiotherapy Department

Saturday, September 14, 2019

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The Physiotherapy Department at St Ann's Bay Regional Hospital has been bolstered with critical equipment to support stroke prevention and care.

Funds to purchase the medical supplies, valued at just over $600,000, were raised by Sandals Foundation through the 2019 Sandals Golf and Jerk Festival held in May this year.

Speaking at the recent handover ceremony, Debra Treasure, manager of the physiotherapy services at the hospital, said the equipment will help residents beyond the north-east health region.

“The closest physiotherapy department outside of this region would either be at Falmouth or at Spanish Town Hospital. Recently, they opened one in Linstead but it's still not yet fully functional. So persons in Guys Hill, St Catherine or Kellits in Clarendon which is quite a few hours away still find it easier to come here for physiotherapy,” Treasure said.

The donated items comprise a recumbent exercise bike; mirror therapy box; two 9-hole pegboards; two rehabilitation hands, shoulder and arm skates; a treadmill; one digital stimulation unit; and two pinch pin resistance therapy exercises for fingers and hands.

Treasure noted that some of the items will aid in the hospital's preventative care treatment.

“The treadmill and bicycle can be used in our preventative work. By monitoring and assessing the performance of persons who are already predisposed to non-communicable diseases, we can help them make the necessary lifestyle changes to reduce their risk of getting a stroke,” she said.

In addition to the services offered in the Physiotherapy Unit, the supplies will form part of the hospital's community outreach programme to residents.

Sandals Foundation Project Manager Karen Zacca commended the hospital for its unique approach to healthcare.

“Access to healthcare is very important and what you do to bring awareness to our communities so they can understand prevention rather than treatment is commendable.”

Sixty-seven-year-old Daisy Campbell-Barrett was the first to be treated with the new rehabilitation arm skate. “It was a good exercise,” she said. “I felt very relaxed. I didn't feel any pain.”

Campbell-Barrett, who suffered a stroke four months ago, travels to the rehabilitation unit for treatment weekly.

The 2019 Sandals Golf and Jerk Festival was hosted at Sandals Golf and Country Club in May as part of celebrating the foundation's 10th anniversary. Major partners included Best Dressed Chicken, Caribbean Producers Jamaica Limited, Starbucks, Walkerswood, Sandals Ocho Rios, Beaches Ocho Rios and Sandals Golf and Country Club. Proceeds from the tournament also support the foundation's 'Care for Kids' Junior Golf programme.

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