Minister of Health, Donville Inniss, Deputy Chairman of the Queen Elizabeth Hospital’s Board of Management, Francis Depeiza and Director of Sandy Crest Medical Centre, Dr. Brian Charles watch as Site Manager of the Diagnostic Radiology Services, Donna Seales demonstrates the use of the new GE CT 16 Slice Bright Speed Elite Scanner, the first of its kind on the island.????Also looking on is Director of Sandy Crest Medical Centre, Carol-Ann Grant.??
A private healthcare institution – Sandy Crest Medical Centre – has been deemed integral to this island’s health and wellness tourism programme.
Minister of Health, Donville Inniss, made this assertion today, as he delivered remarks at the opening of that Centre’s Diagnostic Radiology Services Unit containing the first GE CT 16 Slice Bright Speed Elite Scanner, on the island.
"Your facilities here at Sunset Crest, gel well with the Government of Barbados’ recently announced health and wellness tourism policy. We recognise this as a new industry with tremendous potential to compel us to improve upon the quality and quantity of our health care facilities, whilst creating new markets for our tourism sector," Mr. Inniss said.
While noting that already a solid foundation was established in the tourism sector and in part within the health sector, the Minister stressed: "The Government will take the lead on this and apart from investment in plant, equipment and staff, will create and maintain an enabling environment that facilitates investment in health and wellness tourism.
"As such, facilities like this do play an integral part in any health and wellness tourism programme. It is of utmost importance that both locals and visitors alike, have easy access to the best in diagnostic facilities as an integral part in the provision of timely medical interventions."
Alluding to the challenges of the publicly-owned, Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH), the Minister told those gathered, that the QEH Board was working towards solutions to help alleviate delays in the Accident and Emergency Department and noted that three additional physicians had been recruited for that facility.
While acknowledging that the issue of additional nursing staff was being addressed, he added: "One thing is for sure, there must be major improvements in the management and maintenance of equipment within all of our public health facilities and there must be the employment of the latest in technology across the board."
"I look forward to the day when all radiology equipment in our public facilities are fully functioning and when we have eliminated the need for printing of vast amounts of film to be manually transported around departments, or when you have to wait for an on call radiologist to drive to the Hospital to look at a film and make a diagnosis."
Sandy Crest, a private medical centre located in St. James, provides a 24-hour service to the public and is equipped with the latest "state-of-the-art" technology including a new scanner which now gives the Centre the ability to accurately manage a patient’s medical condition at his/her bedside.