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Jamaican Government approves 300 nurses to assist shortage

SHORTAGE: Nurses in Jamaica

THE JAMAICAN Cabinet has approved the creation of 300 new posts for nurses, in an attempt to ease the personnel shortage in the public health system.

However, according to Caribbean 360, Health Minister Dr. Christopher Tufton says at least 2,000 established positions are required to alleviate the shortage.

He said many of the nurses exiting the public health system or contemplating leaving, identified challenges with salaries, the availability of housing in locations deemed suitable and security of tenure, among the factors influencing their decisions.

Earlier this year, Minister Tufton announced that steps were being taken to address the shortage through recruitments from countries such as Cuba and India, among other interventions.

He also advised that a public/private partnership arrangement for the construction of houses was being explored.

These comments were made by the Health Minister at a Pan American Health Organization (PAHO)/Ministry of Health forum on Health Sector Reform and Service Delivery, which was held to review healthcare systems in other countries, consider the available evidence and draw on lessons learned from their experiences regarding service delivery.

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