A new Board of Directors has been named for the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC) and at its helm will be Ms. Kesaundra Alves.
At a press conference yesterday Senior Minister of Public Health, Ms. Volda Lawrence, said that Cabinet had given its approval for the appointment of the members of the Board of Directors in the public health sector and more specifically that of the GPHC.
In addition to a Bachelor of Laws Degree and Legal Education Certificate, the newly-appointed Chairperson is also the holder of a Master of Laws Degree from Dalhousie University of Law located in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.
According to Minister Lawrence, at Dalhousie University , Alves specialised in health law, ethics, policy and inter-disciplinary programme involving medicine, human rights, law and politics related to public health.
Also identified to hold a place on the Board is Dr. Holly Alexander.
Dr. Alexander, according to Minister Lawrence, has worked for several years in the public health sector and holds diplomas in education, public management, leprology (the study of leprosy and its treatment) and a Masters in Public Health.
Dr. Alexander has been spearheading several aspects of public health over the years.
Dr. Ivelaw Sinclair, another member who has been elected to the Board, currently practices medicine at the Fort Wellington Regional Hospital, West Coast Berbice. He is the holder of a Masters in Medicine and several other certificates in various aspects of health from institutions in a number of countries including Canada and China.
Deputy Permanent Secretary at the Public Health Ministry, Ms. Collette Adams, is the only person to retain a position as a member of the Board.
Representing the Ministry of Finance is Ms. Sonya Roopnauth who holds the portfolio of Director of Budget and had also previously worked in the Ministry of Health. The Nursing Council will be represented by Ms. Cleopatra Barkoye. Barkoye is the holder of a Masters in Nursing Education, among several other certificates.
Also on the Board is Mr. Kemton Alexander, the representative of the Guyana Public Service Union, and he comes with a background of a registered nurse and midwife.
“These persons will now form the members of the Board of the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation. From the outline of their experiences and their qualifications, I believe these persons are well put together to address the several issues which confront the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation, from policy to standards to vacancies, and in order to assist us in being able to achieve that vision of having the Georgetown Public Hospital operate in the manner in which it was set out, and that is our tertiary health institution, specifically as a referral hospital,” said Minister Lawrence.
The Ex officio members of the Board are the Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Shamdeo Persaud, and the hospital’s Chief Executive Officer. The substantive CEO, Mr. Michael Khan, has been sent off on leave pending the completion of his contract, which will not be renewed once ended.
When asked if the new Board will be granted the necessary permission to appoint a Deputy CEO, Minister Lawrence asserted “The Board will be expected to carry out its full mandate as prescribed within the law.”
“I expect that given the gamut of issues which presently exist at the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation, the Board will address these issues. I intend when I meet with them to outline several of those issues and ask that they fashion their agenda to address those issues, and if within those issues is the appointment of a Deputy CEO, then that is what I would expect the Board to do,” Minister Lawrence underscored.
Ahead of the dissolution of the previous Board, which was headed by Dr. Carl ‘Max’ Hanoman, measures were already taken for the appointment of a Deputy CEO, a new position introduced at the GPHC to fill the gap of an absent CEO. However, the process was reportedly stalled by former Minister of Public Health, Dr. George Norton.
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