CARPHA needs more investments — to deliver fully to the Caribbean, says director

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CARPHA Director, Dr James Hospedales

THE Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) has not been receiving sufficient financial support, and as such, has been unable to fully deliver to the Caribbean, Director Dr James Hospedales has said.
“We do not have sufficient investments to deliver programmes… we have received good support from our partners, but more is needed,” Dr Hospedales told the Guyana Chronicle.
Despite the odds, the regional health agency continues to work towards developing new plans and strategies to fight diseases and maladies affecting Caribbean countries.
CARPHA recently held a health conference in Guyana with the aim of addressing climate change, the environment and human health.
Dr Hospedales said regional health officials will discuss ways in which they can improve health systems across the Caribbean.
“CARICOM has already agreed to a six-point policy package to tackle the food environment that children are getting fat on… through the policy we will seek to ensure that there are mandatory nutritional labelling, reduction of advertisements of junk food and reducing fat, salt and sugar,” he said.
Obesity has been a critical problem across the Caribbean and there is need for the promotion of more fruits and vegetables.
Guyana, he said, has an abundance of fruits and vegetables to supply the rest of the Caribbean.
CARPHA’s support for Guyana will continue this year through assistance in ongoing monitoring of diseases, lab-testing and helping Government with tobacco legislation.
CARPHA was legally established in July, 2011 by an Inter-Governmental Agreement signed by Caribbean Community member states and began operations in January, 2013.
The agency rationalises public health arrangements in the Region by combining the functions of five Caribbean Regional Health Institutes (RHIs) into a single agency.