Barbados may not have an Adolescent Health Strategy but this country’s Acting Chief Medical Officer of Health (CMO), Dr. Kenneth George, said a number of strategies have been put in place to ensure the health of the nation’s youth.
He made this observation while addressing a workshop entitled: The Development of an Adolescent Health Strategy in Barbados using the AA-HA Guidance to Support Country Implementation for National Programming, at the Accra Beach Resort.
The CMO mentioned a number of initiatives and activities that have been put in place, such as the Development of a National Youth Policy by the Government in 2012; and an adolescent services programme by the Barbados Family Planning Association.
He also listed the Ministry of Health’s Draft National Adolescent Health Policy of Barbados, which outlines comprehensive plans and programs services for adolescents; and the training of public health nurses on the early identification of high-risk youth and the requisite health care and other interventions needed in a timely manner.
“We recognise that the solutions to adolescence health cannot be only championed by health care alone and will involve several agencies, including youth and sport, education, welfare, law enforcement and of course, the invaluable contributions from the non-governmental organisations and civil society,” Dr. George noted.
The CMO added that often society blamed the youth for not fully engaging others in finding solutions to their problems, and urged greater discussion in homes, schools and communities where they reside on issues that affect youth adolescence.