Port Maria Hospital, Central Medical Lab forge partnership
Orantes Moore, Gleaner Writer
In recent weeks, private companies such as Central Medical Laboratories (CML) and FirstCaribbean International Bank (FCIB) have demonstrated an impressive level of corporate social responsibility by making charitable contributions to government-run organisations in St Mary.
Last month, CML donated a new computer to the Port Maria Hospital (PMH) and last week, FCIB donated a $300,000 gas stove to Tacky High School after discovering that students were unable to receive cooked meals because their canteen, which had been destroyed by fire in May, remained closed.
According to the medical officer in charge at PMH, Dr Maurice Sloley, the symbiotic relationship between private firms and government bodies is essential in helping Jamaica sustain a thriving economy.
He told Rural Xpress: "CML has played a key role in helping the government services accomplish certain objectives, and today they are donating this computer for us to use in the emergency department at PMH.
"We are extremely grateful for this boost because we are trying to modernise and keep apace of developing technologies in the field of medicine, and this computer will go a long way in helping us achieve some of our goals.
He added: "The liaisons between private labs and government medical services are a key factor in providing better health care.
"For us, it is important that we maintain these types of relationships because at this point in time, there are several tests the government service does not provide, and they are only available at a few private labs.
"CML is a leader in this field and offers a lot of tests at good prices, so we work together to ensure that patients get the best possible care."
first major laboratory
Under the leadership of founder, Roy Clarke, CML was the first major laboratory to set up services outside of Kingston and has been serving the people of St Mary for more than four decades.
CML's customer service manager for the north coast, Caroline Lee, claims the company, now run by Clarke's daughter, Audrey, has built a solid reputation for delivering quality health-care services by partnering wherever possible with PMH and focusing on the needs of patients outside of the corporate area.
She explained: "We take great pleasure in handing over this new computer to PMH to assist them in providing medical and surgical services to the people of St Mary.
"We have been part of the community in Port Maria since 1971, so we have had a long-running and continuous relationship with that community, not just the hospital.
"It's important and essential that we maintain these types of relationships because it's really about people; we try to work as a family.
"When the staff at PMH said they needed a computer, there was never any question as to whether we would help or not. It's just as if you have neighbours living besides each other for the past 20 or 30 years; if they need help and you can, you do."
Lee added: "The people of St Mary have always supported us and the hospital has always given us business, even though we are a private sector company, and so we provide for them in their time of need."