t’s finalized! Grenada and Canada have teamed up to provide healthcare services aimed at preventing and treating hearing loss and ear-related disorders among Grenadians.
At 11 am on January 20, 2012, government and health officials witnessed the momentous signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Ministry of Health and the world-renowned Canadian International Hearing Services (CIHS).
The agreement paves the way for the start of clinical operations and procedures of various kinds. It means Grenadians no longer have to travel overseas to access top class medical care for ear-related disorders.
Health Minister Sen. Ann Peters, who participated in last Friday’s signing ceremony, said the occasion signaled the rebirth of what used to be an exceptional and rather fruitful relationship between Grenada and CIHS.
Peters told reporters that prior to 2000, Grenada and CIHS had a very good working relationship. The ties resulted in several Grenadians receiving medical assistance through CIHS, as well as training for many local health and education workers.
“Because of government’s commitment to improving and delivering on its promise of a renewed Primary Healthcare, we at the Ministry of Health saw it necessary to engage the Canadians and renew the relationship in the interest of all Grenadians,’’ explained the Health Minister.
She added that both parties are to embark on a project aimed at improving the delivery of hearing service to Grenadians, since CIHS primary focus is to assist developing nations initiate or improve their comprehensive hearing health care.
CIHS’s Special Education Consultant, Ms. Dorothy Boothroyd, said her organization has been involved in the Caribbean for more than 35 years, providing training, hearing aids, and hearing-prevention disorder treatment and management to people.
The organization’s envoy said Grenada can expect many positives to be derived from the project under the new agreement. She commended the Ministry of Health and the government for recognizing the importance and benefits of the project to the Grenadian people.
Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health, Isaac Bhagwan, signed the January 20 agreement on behalf of Grenada.
Dr. Robert Hage, a Canadian born-Grenadian citizen that specializes in Ear, Nose and Throat medicine, will serve as the local coordinator of the project. It is expected that ear-related medical services will be extended to community health facilities across the country in the coming weeks.
In November 2011, the Grenada Health Ministry began discussions with CIHS on providing medical assistance to the people of the Tri-island nation. Following the successful conclusion of discussions, a senior official from the Canada-based organization visited Grenada last week to finalize and sign the partnership arrangement.