• On April 7, the Ministry of Health celebrated the first anniversary of the ‘Jamaica Moves’ campaign.
• The initiative was expanded to schools at the start of the 2018/19 academic year, with the goal of educating students on how to live healthy lives.
• Health Minister Hon. Dr. Christopher Tufton addressed the United Nation General Assembly High Level Meeting in New York on September 27, where he outlined activities being undertaken through Jamaica Moves, among other programmes, to combat Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs).
Human Papillomavirus (HPV)
• As at August 31, a total of 8,497 girls had received the first dose of HPV vaccine (7,420 doses given for cohort 1 and 1,077 doses for cohort 2).
• Vaccination of the second cohort of girls started in July 2018, during school medicals and orientation sessions.
• The public health team visited approximately 184 schools for cohort one and 89 schools so far for cohort two.
Programme for the Reduction of Maternal and Child Mortality
• Ground was broken for the construction of High Dependency Units (HDUs) at Bustamante Hospital for Children; Victoria Jubilee and Kingston Public; St. Ann’s Bay; and Spanish Town Hospitals.
• Six ambulances were purchased at a cost of $80 million; $95.5 million provided to equip the ambulances; and a neonatal unit constructed at the Mandeville Hospital.
• $13.2 million was committed to design four primary care centres at Savanna-la-Mar, Westmoreland; St. Jago Park, St. Catherine; Mandeville Comprehensive, Manchester and Annotto Bay, St. Mary, as well as two community hospitals at Alexandria, St. Ann and Chapelton, Clarendon.
• Doctors and nurses were trained to support the upgraded services at the health facilities.
• The European Union (EU) has committed to providing 22 million Euros for PROMAC.
Enhanced Vector Control Programme
• The Vector Control Programme was launched with aim of stemming the possibility of an outbreak of an arbovirus.
• 560 people were employed in the first phase between July and September and 330 in the second phase between October and December. The workers were strategically placed in select communities to distribute educational material and undertake mosquito search and destroy actions.
• A new Mosquito Control and Research Unit (MCRU) was opened to conduct research aimed at improving interventions that will reduce the impact of arboviruses on the population.
• Work started on establishing an early warning system to detect increases in arbovirus transmission.