Cayman Islands Government

04/07/2020 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 04/07/2020 17:57

World Health Day Message

The World Health Organization (WHO) has designated the year 2020 as the International Year of the Nurse and the Midwife. World Health Day (WHD) is a global health awareness day celebrated annually on the 7th April under the sponsorship of the World Health Organization. This year, the focus of WHD is to support and celebrate the work of our nurses and midwives. On behalf of my Cabinet colleagues and the people of the Cayman Islands I extend my gratitude to all those who serve these islands in this noble profession.

This designation by the WHO is a momentous occasion as it marks the first time that this global body has designated a year for a single professional group signifying their essential role in the health and well-being of our population and the inextricable link between health, national development and economic sustainability.

This country and our people owe a debt of gratitude to all nurses who have served in various capacities throughout every generation from the early pioneers such as Leila Yates, Cayman's first nurse; Josie Solomon and the many other dedicated and committed professionals who now make up the profession. They continue to provide care in a variety of settings in the Cayman Islands with one shared objective to offer the best healthcare to everyone in these islands.

On a personal level we all can relate to the impact of a nurse in our lives. There are very few us whose lives haven't been touched by the comfort and reassurance that nurses provide, every hour of the day, every day of the year from before the moment of birth, through crises in our health, to the day we pass away - a nurse is always there.

I am pleased with the proactive approach already taken by government in creating a nursing programme at the University College of the Cayman Islands to provide career opportunities for Caymanians, ensure the sustainability of our healthcare system and reduce the impact of the projected global shortage of nurses in our healthcare system. We will continue to provide any required resources and incentives for young Caymanians who choose a career in the healthcare field and wish to return home to serve their country.

However, we recognize that there will be need for more experienced, specialist and skilled nurses who we will need to recruit to fill critical roles to guarantee the sustainability of a high-quality public healthcare system in these Islands. Our Ministry is committed to this important consideration.

Today, I salute, thank and appreciate all nurses and midwives, and all other healthcare workers, whether in the public or private sector for your commitment to these islands and the years of devotion in caring for our people, especially at this time as you are the frontline workers of the COVID-19 response. Congratulations to you on a well-deserved year dedicated in your honor and I wish for all of you a long and successful career in this your chosen profession.

For further information contact: Suzette Ebanks