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July 31, 2014
Star News


Health programme relaunched to reduce child mortality

Women with high-risk pregnancies and premature babies will soon have a better chance at life with the launch of the Programme for the Reduction of Maternal and Child Mortality (PROMAC).

The far-reaching $3.3 billion EU funded programme will see the establishment of 11 high-dependency units (HDUs) in six hospitals across Jamaica by 2017. In addition, 86 specialist health professionals will be trained to staff the new facilities.

Health Minister, Dr Fenton Ferguson, says there is real hope for the future now that PROMAC is on the move.

"The programme goals are clear. Through this programme, we are aiming to reduce the incidence of neonatal deaths due to inadequate access to high dependency care. Through the infrastructural and equipment initiatives under the programme we want to see a noticeable expansion of service delivery," Dr Ferguson assured.

He was speaking yesterday at the launch of the training component of PROMAC at the offices of the Planning Institute of Jamaica. The programme is part of a $22 million grant from the European Union that will assist Jamaica in meeting some of its 2015 Millennium Development Goals.

The relatively high incidence of neonatal and maternal deaths in Jamaica can be less if there is adequate professional and technical intervention. The first ever batch neonatal professionals will start training at the University of the West Indies (Mona), beginning September 2014.

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