Nevis Health Minister – Mark Brantley
May 07, 2013
Nurses on Nevis have been publicly commended by Minister of Health in the Nevis Island Administration (NIA) Hon. Mark Brantley, for their service in critical areas of health care to persons on Nevis. He gave the commendation when he delivered a televised address on NTV 8 on May 5th, 2013 to herald in the observance of Nurses Week 2013, from May 6th to 12th on the island.
Nurses Week which has its roots in the recognition of Florence Nightingale’s birthday, on May 12th, seeks to draw attention to and celebrate the recognition that nurses and nursing make in the community and has been celebrated since 1965. This years’ theme is “Closing the Gap: Accomplishing the Millennium Development Goals”.
“The hard work of Nurses throughout the globe including the 14 nurses currently on staff in public health facilities and at the Alexandra Hospital must be commended for their efforts in this regard, for not only providing curative health care services but also health promotion and disease prevention services to the population,” he said.
According to Mr. Brantley, the Nursing profession on Nevis had moved ahead into specialised areas.
“The Nursing profession has continued to advance to a level where we do not boast solely of expertly trained nurse midwives but nursing specialists in the area of anaesthesiology, nursing administration, theatre techniques, public health and mental health,” he said.
The Health Minister also acknowledged the efforts of Nurses who served in the areas of parental care, nutrition and immunisation which he noted had enabled Nevis to maintain a relatively low infant mortality rate.
“Immunisation coverage for measles, an indicator used to measure our progress towards meeting United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDG) – goal number 4, which speaks to reducing child mortality is close to 100 percent. I must take time to applaud Public Health Nurses for this remarkable achievement,” he said.
Regarding the achievements in the area of the island’s mortality rate, Mr. Brantley said they were remarkable.
“Systems to ensure comprehensive ante-natal programmes coupled with all births being attended to by skilled health personnel, including nurse midwives have been in place for decades and have resulted in a maternal mortality rate of zero for over 10 years, a remarkable health achievement for any United Nations member state,” he said.
Nurses trained in Voluntary Counselling and Testing for HIV/AIDS as well as the treatment and support for the disease, Mr. Brantley explained, would help Nevis in spite of its small population to contribute towards the realisation of the MDGs target number 7 which he stated spoke to halting the disease by 2015 and reversing its spread.
However, Health Minister Brantley expressed the view that beyond the attainment of the MDGs, Nurses continued to be a valuable asset to the Nevis society with the provision of care and treatment services to children, adolescents, men, women and the elderly in the population and thanked them for their service.
“I want to take the opportunity to record my thanks and appreciation to Nurses and those involved in providing nursing duties including nursing assistants, nursing attendants, community health workers and emergency medical technicians.
“Your service continues to be invaluable and has a direct effect on the economy, as your efforts in keeping our population healthy continue to allow for positive contribution of individuals to this country,” he said.
In conclusion, Mr. Brantley reminded the youth that Nursing was a priority area in which the Nevis Island Administration was willing to invest and encouraged those thinking of a career path to explore nursing; a noble profession which allowed an individual to not only practise medicine but also to satisfy other career interests including that of counsellor and teacher.
“The demand for human resources in this clinical profession is great and will remain a top priority for educational investment for this Administration,” he said.