As part of the activities to mark Education Month, staff of the Ministry of Education, Science, Technology and Innovation, along with teachers from across the island, hosted their annual Health Day on Thursday.

Coordinator and Deputy Chief Media Resource Officer (Ag.), Burkley Lowe, described the penultimate event of Education Month as a success, noting that like the other activities held for students, it was well patronised.

He remarked: ???We had a good turnout. This is not unusual as staff always look forward to being part of this annual activity which has as a key aim to make them more aware of their mental, physical and spiritual health.???

The event was staged on the grounds of the Elsie Payne Complex, where the Ministry is located. It saw patrons obtaining various health checks, including blood pressure, blood sugar and HIV tests.

HIV testing was a big highlight of the day, as 17 persons were tested in the mobile bus, loaned to the Ministry by the Ministry of Public Works??? HIV Committee.

HIV coordinator in the Education Ministry, Hughson Inniss, pointed out that information was given not only on HIV but on other sexually transmitted infections, said: ???We told them about self-esteem building, self-awareness and informed about care options available to them, like the Ladymeade Reference Unit.

???We also talked about reducing HIV infection by way of behavioural change and persons were also informed about partner testing. It is good for both partners to be tested because if one is positive then you need to be sure the other is not infected.???

Several booths were also on display, including Green World Health Products and Unicity Health Products, which allowed sampling of a variety of health foods and beverages.

Patrons were also treated with seminars on Mental Health by Rodney Toppin of the Psychiatric Hospital; Oral Health by Dental Hygienist, Tricia Brathwaite; A-Z of Eye Disease by Ophthalmologist, Dr. Delores Griffith; as well as Breast Cancer Awareness by Merlene Medford from the Barbados Cancer Society.

Education Month with its theme: Charting A Course To New Horizons in Education, will officially conclude on Saturday, November 1, with a vintage bus tour of the island.

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