CariHealth Jamaica is a project under our Caribbean Health Care Initiative (CariHealth) that focuses on the health care needs on the Caribbean island of Jamaica. The goal of CariHealth Jamaica is to assist public hospitals and other public medical facilities improve the quality of health care they provide to the Jamaican community.
We are currently building a partnership with the St. Ann's Bay Regional Hospital.
The St. Ann’s Bay Regional Hospital (SABRH) is a Type B, 304 bed, acute care, general hospital, that is accredited for teaching by the University of the West Indies. It is located on the North Coast of Jamaica in the parish of St. Ann.
It is the regional referral hospital for the North Eastern parishes of St. Ann, St. Mary, and Portland, receiving admissions from Port Antonio Hospital, Annotto Bay Hospital and Port Maria Hospital. The St. Ann’s Bay Hospital caters for an estimated population of 365,000 with regular contribution from the adjoining parishes of Trelawny, Clarendon, St. Catherine and St. Andrew.
Due to its location near to popular visitor attractions such as Dunn’s River Falls, Dolphin Cove, Mystic Mountain, Chukka Cove, and numerous resorts and hotels, SABRH also provides health services to the tourism sector.
Why are we partnering with SABRH?
Based on our Founder's experience (read The Karen Dale Story) several areas of need were observed at SABRH. These include:
Malfunctioning and insufficient Ambulances
No MRI Machine
No CT Scan Machine
Broken Wheel Chairs
Patient Beds that do not adjust
No Neurologist on Staff
Female Medical Ward with no air conditioning
We have conducted a need assessment at the hospital and through our discussions with the CEO, doctors on staff and other medical personnel, the above listed observations have been confirmed.
Based on the need assessment and the hospital's priorities, our long-term goal is to raise funds to procure a CT Scanner for the hospital. The impact of the hospital having a CT Scanner on-site is huge. Currently patients have to be transported to a private Imaging Center in the neighboring town of Ocho Rios to have scans done. The patients have to pay the Imaging Center out of pocket (or from other sources) BEFORE an appointment is scheduled for them. If the patient cannot afford to pay and they do not have access to other source of funds, they will not be able to get a CT Scan. Most patients cannot afford to pay.
In addition, due to limited availability of ambulances, patients have to wait sometimes at least a day, before the hospital is able to get them to the Imaging Center.
With a CT Scanner on-site, all patients will be able to get CT Scans which is life-changing especially for those who cannot afford to pay (there would be no fee charged because SABRH is a public hospital), the wait time will be significantly reduced, and the doctors will be better equipped to make quicker diagnoses and save more lives.
“CT scans are really an important tool for us as physicians because it allows us to see inside the body without having to perform surgery to do so.
In certain emergencies like a stroke or trauma to the head or chest or abdomen where time makes a huge difference for the outcome of the patient, the CT scan can be used to quickly make a diagnosis and start the appropriate treatment, which can mean the difference between life or death for certain patients or the difference between being independent or being debilitated for the rest of their life. Having a CT Scanner on site at the hospital is a tremendous asset towards the quick diagnosis and subsequently the timely and appropriate treatment of patients.
It also helps with the duration of stay for the patients, because as there is no CT Scanner at SABH, there is a large number of patients that remain in the hospital for extended periods of time waiting for financial assistance to get this study. It would also cut down the amount of admissions if certain suspected diagnosis is found negative on CT Scan when the patient initially presents to the hospital.”
~ Dr. Roxan Richards, St. Ann's Bay Regional Hospital
There is also a need for the following equipment:
Vital Signs Monitors
Heavy Duty Blood Pressure Machines
In the short-term, our goal is to also assist with providing items from this list.