Public health awarded for healthy surveillance

| 30/09/2014

(CNS): The Public Health Department has received an award for excellence in public health surveillance from the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA). The award was for Cayman’s contribution to the regional surveillance system and the public health department’s timely and relevant response to health aberrations during 2012-2013. Congratulating Medical Officer of Health Dr Kiran Kumar and his team, Dr James Hospedales, Executive Director of CARPHA,said, "Good public health surveillance is the cornerstone of preparedness for timely, effective response to new diseases and other threats to health, and for effective monitoring and evaluation of health programs and policies.”

“The Cayman Islands are to be congratulated for winning the CARPHA 2014 Award for Public Health Surveillance, demonstrating a high standard among the Caribbean countries that will redound to the benefit of the people and community,” the doctor added.
Dr Kumar who accepted the award at the 12th meeting of Caribbean National Epidemiologists and Lab Directors in Trinidad and Tobago earlier this month said he was pleasantly surprised when the announcement was made at the meeting. 

“I am extremely happy and proud that CARPHA has recognised our work,” he said. “I am also grateful for the opportunity to lead our local Communicable Disease Surveillance team which includes: Public Health, Mosquito Research and Control Unit (MRCU) Department of Environmental Health, the Health Services Authority Laboratory and the Department of Agriculture.”

This is the fifth time that Cayman Islands has collected an award in the field of public health. In 2009 and 1999 the department was honoured for work in the Expanded Programme on Immunization (EPI), to eradicate vaccine-preventable diseases in the Cayman Islands. It also received what officials described in a government release as “kudos in 2007 for excellence in communicable disease surveillance,” from the Pan American Health Organization PAHO)/Caribbean Epidemiology Centre CAREC now the Caribbean Public Health Agency- CARPHA.

Earlier, in 1992 the American Association for World Health, recognized the department with the Macedo World Health Day Award, for the health promotion programme Heartbeat Cayman in recognition of its unique approach to the prevention of cardiovascular diseases.

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