Minister of Health and Wellness, Dr Christopher Tufton, says the Ministry will be renewing compassionate care training for personnel in the public health system.
The initiative seeks to improve the quality of care with an emphasis on customer care and service delivery.
Dr Tufton said he has the “absolute admiration and respect” for healthcare professionals, who are working hard to meet the increased demands brought by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
He noted that even with the “amazing job” that they are doing in response to the crisis, there are incidents that might erode public confidence in the system, hence he has asked the Ministry and the regional health authorities to renew the training.
“If we lose that [public confidence], no matter how good you are as a doctor or a nurse, it adds to naught,” the Minister said, while speaking at the official opening of the newly rebuilt Kenneth Baugh Health Centre in Point Hill, St Catherine, on Wednesday (June 9).
Dr Tufton said that the first response of health professionals when serving people “in their most distressing state” should be “to alleviate and calm their fears, as well as cauterise the psychological state of the patients even before you assess, diagnose and treat”.
“Ken Baugh represented that in many ways,” he said, noting that as a surgeon, the late former Health Minister “approached his job in a way so as to calm unsettled situations and showed empathy. The solution was not just on the prescription pad; it was how he dealt with people.
“We need to learn that, make that become a dominant theme in how we administer public health,” Dr. Tufton said.
The Minister stressed that it is important that public health professionals are not only technically sound but serve with compassion and empathy and show understanding to patients.
“Where persons are found to be wanting, what is important is that we investigate and take action,” he said.