Thu | Dec 2, 2021

Healthcare workers lauded for exceptional service

Published:Wednesday | March 10, 2021 | 12:26 AM
Southern Regional Health Authority (SRHA) Regional Director Michael Bent presents a token of appreciation to supervisory nurse practitioner and regional rheumatic fever coordinator, Andrienne Sylvester, at the recognition ceremony of nurses and midwives ac
Southern Regional Health Authority (SRHA) Regional Director Michael Bent presents a token of appreciation to supervisory nurse practitioner and regional rheumatic fever coordinator, Andrienne Sylvester, at the recognition ceremony of nurses and midwives across the SRHA.

Two hundred and ninety-four Clarendon healthcare workers were among 975 nurses and midwives across the Southern Regional Health Authority (SRHA) recognised for exceptional service, sacrifice and contribution, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The region includes Clarendon, St Elizabeth and Manchester.

The nurses and midwives were recognised at a virtual ceremony last week Tuesday and received tokens of appreciation and special awards, the SRHA said in a press release on Friday.

Professor Peter Figueroa, public health specialist, lauded nurses, adding that special tribute must be paid to those who have remained in Jamaica, noting that the country loses scores of nurses annually.

“Nurses are the backbone of the health service and the system would collapse without our nurses. Given the challenges of COVID-19 and the shortages of nurses and equipment, and the heavy workload, there are times when all of us do slip, where we get tired and weary and not at our best. This is why teamwork is so critical and we must be supportive of each other,” said Figueroa.

‘ACTS OF HEROISM’

Wayne Chen, chairman of the SRHA board, lamented that the good work of healthcare workers is often overshadowed by negative reports. “But what I see every day are acts of heroism that go unrecognised,” Chen said.

“When I got the news of the first healthcare worker in our region who tested positive for COVID-19, tears came to my eyes. I still get emotional just thinking of the healthcare workers; the nurses especially, on the front line every day, going to war for the people of this country,” he said.

Chief executive officer at the May Pen Hospital, St Andrade Sinclair, lauded the nurses, stating that their service exceed the call of duty.

“Let us reflect on the last 12 months of our calender year, and one can see the phenomenal contribution they have made in this COVID-19 pandemic. I salute them during this recognition period and thank them for being a part of May Pen Hospital, “ Sinclair told The Gleaner.

Recently, the SRHA copped all awards at the Ministry of Health & Wellness’ Rheumatic Fever Fifth Annual Review for the highest rheumatic fever coverage, highest number of rheumatic fever audits conducted, and regional rheumatic fever coordinator of the year.