Regional

MP provides hundreds of students with free medical care

By Renae Dixon Observer staff reporter dixonr@jamaicaobserver.com

Monday, August 18, 2014    

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Medical practitioner and Member of Parliament (MP) for North West St Ann Dr Dayton Campbell has used his medical training to the benefit of hundreds of students in his constituency. Dr Campbell, with the support of other health-care providers, has been going through communities in the constituency to do back-to-school medical checks for students.

When the Jamaica Observer North East spoke with Dr Campbell last week, he said approximately 1,200 students had already benefited from a series of health fairs with several others to come before the end of August.

According to the MP, the free medical clinics which started on July 7 will expand across 31 communities in his constituency and will come to an end on August 28.

"This year we sort of decentralised the programme a little bit more so we are going into 31 communities," he said, adding that, " The majority of the persons are happy. Persons are benefiting from the venture and it is something that we hope we will be able to continue to do."

Several organisations including the Registrar General's Department and the Ministry of Labour were among those which also went into the communities to offer their services during the health fairs.

Dr Campbell commended the persons who volunteered to assist the initiative: "I want to also commend the volunteers who come out with me, the nurses, the doctors. Some of the time we need additional doctors depending on the community and the crowd that we expect," he said, noting that doctors from the St Ann's Bay Regional Hospital also assisted.

He also commended the social workers who participated.

Dr Campbell said there were other persons who were not a part of the medical profession who also gave of their time in assisting in whatever way they could during the health fairs.

"We would also want to say thanks to Food For The Poor who have assisted us with some back-to-school supplies. We also will be getting some supplies from JAHJAH Foundation (Jamaicans Abroad Helping Jamaicans At Home)," he added.

"I think it's a good project; I want persons to even continue this thing for as long as it is required in the schools. There are parents who come out with three, four and five children and I know this is saving them a lot, especially during the harsh economic times. They would have to be spending at least $1,000 (if they did not have access to the health fairs). They also don't have to wait for the entire day as we go into their communities," the MP pointed out.

He said going into the communities not only helped the residents to save on the cost of having to travel to a doctor but significantly cut down on the waiting time to get medical attention

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