Mauritius: A dissemination workshop on the Progress Report with regard to the status of the implementation of the Health Sector Strategic Plan (HSSP) 2020-2024 opened this morning at Hennessy Park Hotel in Ebène.
The Minister of Health and Wellness, Dr Kailesh Kumar Singh Jagutpal; the Ambassador and Head of the Delegation of the European Union (EU) to the Republic of Mauritius, Mr Vincent Degert; the representation of the World Health Organization (WHO) in Mauritius, Dr Anne Marie Ancia; and other personalities were present.
The HSSP 2020-2024 for the Republic of Mauritius was prepared by the Ministry of Health and Wellness in collaboration with the WHO and relevant stakeholders in 2020. The Plan provides a roadmap which encapsulates the Government’s vision and ambition for 2020-2024 in the health sector and which considers the new legitimate aspirations of the population in health care. This Plan also addresses the forthcoming challenges, apposite to an ageing population, accelerated use of new technologies in the dissemination of efficient medical care, and potential new disease outbreaks.
In his address, Dr Jagutpal stated that the HSSP 2020-2024 remains faithful to the Government Vision 2030, the Government Programme 2020-2024, the Sustainable Development Goals, and other commitments endorsed by Mauritius at the global and regional levels.
The HSSP is being implemented through coordinated efforts involving various stakeholders, including other Ministries, the private sector, development partners and civil society, he said.
Minister Jagutpal also enumerated the main activities completed for this period. They include the introduction of several Action Plans and Policies, namely the National Population Policy 2021-2024; the National Cancer Control Programme Action Plan 2022-2025; the Tobacco Control Action Plan 2022-2027; the National Breastfeeding Action Plan 2022-2027; the National Action Plan on Oral Health 2022-2027; introduction of Preconception Clinics; scaling up of echography services for pregnant women; setting up of a Fertility Clinic at SSRN Hospital; and introduction of new therapies for the management of neonatal care.
He added that a number of services have been introduced or scaled up, namely Emergency Resuscitation Units, a new Methadone Day Care Centre, a new Rehabilitation Centre at Brown Sequard Mental Health Care Centre, systematic Hepatitis B and C screening, and the setting up of a National Centre for Gastroenterology and Hepatology.
Furthermore, the Health Minister highlighted that with a view to tackling risks associated with infectious diseases, the Ministry of Health and Wellness had implemented guidelines on Infection Prevention and Control in all public healthcare institutions. Twelve Ultra-Cold Chain freezers were also acquired with the support of the EU to strengthen logistics for effective cold chains in the event of infectious diseases and for storage of vaccines.
For improved care to patients and adherence to Clinical Guidelines, the Ministry has, since February 2022, initiated Clinical Audits in all Regional Hospitals in Outpatient Departments, at the General Surgery unit and the Gynaecology and Obstetrics departments, he said.
Speaking about the investments being made in infrastructure in the health sector, Dr Jagutpal said that the construction of new public health infrastructure and the upgrading of existing ones are ongoing in order to scale up the provision of advanced healthcare services to the population as well as reinforce the primary health care service delivery at community level.
The ongoing public health infrastructure projects include: the construction of the new Cancer Hospital; the new Flacq Teaching Hospital; the new Eye Hospital; four Mediclinics and five Community Health Centres. Projects in the pipeline include the construction of Renal Transplant Unit at Jawaharlal Nehru Hospital; a Modern Warehouse for the storage of Pharmaceutical Products and other Medical Consumables at Cȏte D’or; a National Health Laboratory Services Centre at Cȏte D’or; State-of-the-Art Cardiac Centre on a “Design, Finance, Build and Maintain” model at Côte D’Or; two Mediclinics and four Area Health Centres.
For his part, Ambassador Degert underlined the practical and concrete collaboration between Mauritius and the EU in the fight of the COVID-19 pandemic. He highlighted that the EU has reoriented its assistance programme towards the health sector since the outbreak of the pandemic adding that the EU will announce the implementation of a Global Health Strategy.
He underlined that the focus would be on delivering better health and well-being, strengthening health systems and advancing universal health coverage, and combating health threats by applying an inter-disciplinary One-Health approach. Hence, cooperation at the international level will be reinforced, and investments will be made in research and innovation.
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