Addressing administrative gaps and filling pertinent vacancies at the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC) will be among the mandated task of the recently installed Board of Directors.
Speaking to the members of the Board recently, Senior Minister of Public Health, Ms. Volda Lawrence, shared her conviction that the Corporation cannot function effectively if the aforementioned areas are not efficiently addressed.
She also pointed to the need for the Board to give keen attention to the concerns of the medical staff as well. “The conditions under which the day to day operations are effected must be improved,” said Minister Lawrence as she added that “the environment [of the hospital] must be conducive, the ambience patient and staff friendly if we want to make inroads and impact significantly to achieve desirable outcomes.
All this, the Minister added, has a bearing on the policies and decisions that the Board will execute in order for it to function smoothly and efficiently. As such she further noted that it will be incumbent on the members of the Board to focus on differentiate responsibilities, set strategic direction and establish ethical standards and values.
“In a nutshell, the Board, in its oversight role, must formulate an Action Plan which incorporates strategies for upgrading and revising of standards and procedures, implementation of mechanisms that will foster harmonious relationships among all levels of administrative as well as medical staff, resulting in quality service to all those who approach the facility for patient care services,” said Minister Lawrence.
But even with the fast-tracking of deliberate efforts, the Public Health Minister asserted that “it is well nigh impossible for all problems and issues to be fixed overnight.”
She continued, “I have every confidence that our Board members are ready to accept the challenges and to play a pivotal role in effecting positive internal control. I am convinced that the Board will work to ensure that efforts are made to detect and prevent errors, fraud and misappropriation of assets, that there is transparency in the organization.”
The Minister pointed out, “We are well aware that a ship without a captain falters and fails to take advantage of available opportunities for advancement; this, the Ministry can ill afford, so we think that it is opportune for this new Board of Directors to firmly take the helm and pilot the organization to greater accountability and transparency and optimal delivery of patient care.”
The stakeholders all do look forward with great anticipation and enthusiasm to the work of this Board.
According to Minister Lawrence, “I can already sense the synergy and anticipate that standards will be elevated and progressive ideas will emerge and the Board will operate using the Best practices and effective Management Control.”
Moreover, Minister Lawrence has asserted that the pivotal role of the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) cannot be overemphasized. Currently acting in the capacity of CEO at the institution is Mr. Alan Johnson.
Speaking of the importance of the CEO the Minister underscored that “that person is the link between the Board and the GPHC, the medium through which the setting and following of standard operational procedures will be effected.”
As such, the Public Health Minister noted that the onus is on the Board to monitor the position of CEO closely to ensure that the Corporation performs at the optimum and that there are leading development initiatives for its long-term success.
The new Chairperson of the Board is Ms. Kesaundra Alves. The other members are Dr. Holly Alexander, Dr. Ivelaw Sinclair, Ms. Collette Adams, Ms. Sonya Roopnauth, Ms. Cleopatra Barkoye and Mr. Kemton Alexander.
At the beginning of February 2017, stakeholders had the opportunity to become familiar with the Chairman and the members comprising the Board of Directors. According to Minister Lawrence, “We want to take this Board one step further, we do not want to delay their involvement and service for we know that each member brings with him [or her] expertise and potential which, once well directed, can only result in the enhancement of the service at the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation.”
Minister Lawrence has shared that it has become evident that communication and deliberations among all stakeholders will be paramount to avoid impasses that will thwart the realization of goals and objectives. For this reason, she added that the Board must be cognizant of its roles which entail establishing well-written and effective policies, making significant strategic decisions and overseeing the activities of the corporation.
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