Two New Polyclinics To Be Constructed

Government has committed to building two polyclinics to replace the existing ones in Warrens, St. Michael, and Oistins, Christ Church.

Minister of State in the Ministry of Health and Wellness, Davidson Ishmael, made the announcement during the Psychiatric Hospital’s Inaugural Awards and Recognition Ceremony, held at Mahogany Ridge in St. Thomas, last Saturday.

He told management and staff attending the ceremony that employees must be given the necessary resources to excel, inclusive of purpose-built facilities, so they can effectively deliver services.

The buildings at the Eunice Gibson and the Randal Phillips Polyclinics had outgrown their usefulness, he explained, adding that the remaining polyclinics would be refurbished.

The Minister mentioned that the ongoing construction of the Geriatric Hospital at Waterford, St. Michael, which will accommodate 300 residents when Phase One is completed, was at an advanced stage.

Mr. Ishmael said that maintenance of these new buildings will be prioritised by Government with the setting up of a Board of Management for the infrastructural management of polyclinics and laboratories across the health care sector.

He further noted that the Board will oversee the renewed investment in health care facilities to improve the delivery of service to citizens.  Additionally, he shared that there are planned upgrades to the Psychiatric Hospital, at Black Rock, St. Michael, as part of the phased refurbishment plan.

“Central to the notion of investing in our workforce is the concept of work-life balance.  We must ensure that if we are asking our staff to work hard and strive for excellence it must not come at the cost of their health or having an unequitable work-life balance,” he said, adding that Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley had promised a compact towards creating an environment locally, where nurses would feel more inclined to stay and ply their skills.

Mr. Ishmael continued: “She also agreed to have gyms created at all health facilities to be provided, free of cost, to staff.  I can assure you that not only nurses, but all staff of the Psychiatric Hospital and the Ministry of Health and Wellness will have access to the newly refurbished Gym at the Psychiatric Hospital in the not too distant future.  As a Ministry of Health and Wellness, we must first ensure the wellness of those who are being asked to look after the health and wellness of the nation.”

Retired Senior Nursing Officer, Althea Clarke, receiving the Grace Bailey Start Award of Excellence from Director of the Psychiatric Hospital, David Leacock. (Psychiatric Hospital)

The Minister of State also expressed the view that in order for public servants to excel in their roles, they needed to be provided with the necessary resources, training, and support to deliver high-quality service to the public.

He noted this would be done through strategic investments and reforms, aimed at enhancing efficiency, accountability, and transparency across the public sector.

Furthermore, he said the Ministry would support the Psychiatric Hospital in building out its inaugural awards programme to ensure that other areas that speak directly to high performance and client satisfaction are recognised and rewarded, not only on a yearly basis, but throughout the year, to ensure employee engagement as well as client and employee satisfaction.

“Government has insisted that all departments not only develop service charters but deliver on these promises relative to customer satisfaction, and for this reason awards such as the “Client Service Awards and the “We Care Awards will be given special attention, as these are directly related to feedback from those we serve,” Mr. Ishmael said.