The reform of the Health Sector is a fundamental requisite for
improvement of the Health Care system and the sustained development of Saint Lucia. The
Governments determination to contain escalating health care costs, seek partnerships
in financing the health sector while providing services that are equitable, efficient,
effective and financially sustainable is key to the reform process.
One of the requirements of the reform process, is the need to engage
all parties through the consultative approach to define the way forward in specific terms.
The event of July 31st and August 1st 1998 has demonstrated a level
of enthusiasm that signifies hope in the effort to achieve a reformed heath service. As a
result, there was consensus on a number of issues which are related to a need for the
Client Focused Services recognition of the need for
Health Care Personnel to become more client oriented as a means of guaranteeing some level
of customer/client satisfaction, while establishing client confidence in the services
Integration of Services i.e. Primary, Secondary and Tertiary
health care services Consensus on the need to develop and implement Primary,
Secondary and Tertiary Health Care service plans/programs and the need to establish a link
between these three levels of care.
Inter-sectorial and Inter-ministerial Co-operation To
arrive at comprehensive macro health policies concerning resources allocation and budgets.
Organizational Restructuring using modern management
principles. Policies to support the critical role of health in development and shift from
sickness to wellness model.
Improved Information System which would empower
managers/decision makers with the tools for more informed decision making and sound
planning for the future of the health sector.
Community participation and Involvement Institute
mechanism for community participation in service development and administration.
Professional Self-Regulatory Bodies these must be
developed for medical, nursing and other professional bodies within both the public and
private health sector.
Reorganized Financial Management Systems The need for a
more comprehensive and coordinated approach to health sector financing recognizing that
finance is a necessary tool to achieve health goals.
Quality Assurance through the Health Sector quality
improvement should be adopted as part of the management process. Norms, standards and
systems for delivery of quality services to be established at all levels.
Legislative/regulatory mechanisms to facilitate quality of care monitoring.
Decentralization of authority to align with responsibility.
It was recognized there is a need to give appropriate authority to
allow for the implementations of decisions in an effective manner
Improved Capacity Building (HRD) for The Heath Sector
with emphasis on appropriate skill development and training.
Caution must be exercised!
Health Sector Reform has become central to ongoing and development
activities in the Ministry of Health. Within this context, a wide range of activities
extending from the redevelopment of Victoria Hospital, improvement in the Accident and
Emergency Department; the institutionalization of gender mainstreaming efforts, the
refurbishing of Malgretoute and to the improvement of mental health services have been
included in the planning and Reform processes. The efforts of the Ministry of Health to
restructure and reorganize the sector are guided by the governments policy on health
and on the advice of the Health Sector Reform Committee. This committee comprises
individuals who are both users and providers of health care.