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Photo: Charmaine Metivier (left) and PS Alistair Edwards

Basseterre, St. Kitts, January 31, 2019 (SKNIS): Officials from the University of the West Indies Health Economics Unit, Centre for Health Economics based in Trinidad, have expressed their interest in continuing to work with the St. Kitts and Nevis Government in the shaping and smooth process of implementation of the country’s Universal Health Care Coverage.

Members from the institution have officially completed their contractual obligations having participated in a number of related activities during the design phase. However, Economist Charmaine Metivier at the St. Augustine Campus said the team welcomes the opportunity for continued engagement.

“We are here with you, not just at the design phase but we want to see it through to the end, so feel free to call upon us when you need that advice, when you need that support. Even if you need us to come back, we will make that effort and we will come and support you along the way because we are here down to the end,” she said.

Alistair Edwards, Permanent Secretary responsible for Universal Health Care, praised the UWI team for its hard work over the past year and the commitment to further the cooperation. He noted that the plan to establish an efficient and effective national health care programme is a priority for the government.

“You are well aware of the amount of work that has to be put into something like this and it cannot be a fast forward approach,” he said. “Yes we need it. We have seen many examples. We’ve heard the minister [Hon. Eugene Hamilton] himself quote many examples of people who simply cannot afford health care and we don’t think that death is an option for those persons and that in itself is a platform on which this programme is built.”

Having fulfilled their contractual mandate, the UWI team is scheduled to leave the Federation next week.

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