Major improvements in health sector since 1992
Stabroek News
April 8, 2002

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Dear Editor,

There has been a significant improvement in the health sector over the last nine years.

Not only the infrastructure in Georgetown and other population centres such as New Amsterdam, Linden, West Demerara, Essequibo and Corentyne were restored and expanded but in deprived areas such as the Hinterland, North West District and other more or less remote areas there have been improvements over the last nine years.

Under this government, allocations for the health sector increase each year in the annual budgets. In 1992 expenditure in the health sector was 2.7 per cent of GDP and 5 per cent of the budget and rose to 3.4 per cent of GDP and 7.4 per cent of the revised expenditure in 2001. In this year's Budget the allocation to the Health sector is 4 per cent of GDP and 8 per cent of the budget. We have many, many more doctors, nurses and health technicians and many are going through regular courses of training.

According to the Budget we have been able to develop and improve much of our health infrastructure through SIMAP I and II and the Basic Needs Trust Fund (BNTF) 2,3 and 4. We have successfully negotiated successor programmes with SIMAP III totalling US$22.2 million and with BNTF US $ 8.3 million. Additionally a US$10 million nutrition programme, which is to be funded by the IDB will be launched this year.

These are only some of the plans for development in the health sector for this year and we must appreciate the efforts being made by the government to improve the health infrastructure and provide better service to the people.

Indeed, even Mr Winston Murray of the PNC/R executive in a television interview with Mr Hamley Case said you have to give it to the PPP/C that they have greatly improved the infrastructure of the country. You can't take that from them. I thought that was very honest of him.

Yours faithfully,

John Da Silva