Minister of State in the Ministry of Education and Human Resource Development, Patrick Todd, in conversation with Chief Nursing Officer, Mitchell Clarke; Caribbean Programme Coordinator, PAHO, Dr. Bernadette Theodore-Gandi; and Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Education, Anthony Layne at PAHO Headquarters.

If the nursing profession is to improve in the region, then CARICOM states must consolidate their resources in order to provide training.

This observation was made today by Minister of State in the Ministry of Education and Human Resource Development, Patrick Todd, while addressing the inaugural CARICOM Meeting of Nursing and Midwifery Educators at the Pan American Health Organisation Headquarters.

Stating that this consolidation would become "an urgent need" when the effects of globalisation were felt by developing states, he continued: "… We will be required to determine whether the concept of economies of scale will be applicable to the development of training in the region."

Minister Todd added: "The success of the Regional Examination for Nurse Registration is perhaps testimony to the fact that nurses have the capacity to build and maintain structures and processes, which utilise the system of shared resources in an environment where human resources are scarce."

The Minister of State also pointed to the response Barbados had taken with respect to the migration of nurses to developed countries. "The experiences of our CARICOM partners have caused the Ministry of Education … in collaboration with the Ministry of Health to facilitate plans to ensure that there is an adequate supply of trained nurses available to service the local needs first, but also to allow for movement across CARICOM States when the need arises.

"Nursing and midwifery are evidence-based professions and, as such, it is imperative that we continue to research the factors which will facilitate their transition to a position of excellence regionally and develop a world-class professional body," he said.

The two-day meeting is intended to help develop an action plan for improving nursing and midwifery training in the region.??

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