NHF’s QMS is ISO – 9001:2015 Certified · Government of Jamaica

An agency of the Ministry of Health & Wellness



Twenty-nine (29) Foot Care Assistants who this week graduated in Kingston, from a training programme organized by the Diabetes Association of Jamaica (DAJ) and sponsored by the National Health Fund (NHF) are expected to make a positive impact on the well-being of diabetics, particularly with respect to foot care.

Professor Errol Morrison, Hon. (Life) President, (DAJ) who gave brief remarks at the graduation function which was held at the Terra Nova, says the Caribbean is known as the amputation capital of the world for diabetics and half the number of loss of limbs could be avoided with good foot care which the foot care assistants have been trained to provide for basic foot problems. He also noted that diabetes was among the leading causes of death and in many cases this was due to infection from gangrenous feet.

Mr. Ryland Campbell, Chairman of the NHF Board who was the guest speaker quoted statistics from the Ministry of Health, which showed that as a result of diabetes, an average of 350 amputations were done in public hospitals, for each year 2003-2005. He said the NHF identified the great need for basic foot care services for diabetics, based on the number of persons who attended NHF Community Health Days seeking foot care services which are offered free.

?These Health Day events are held across the island each week and last year one thousand six hundred and seventy (1670) persons with diabetes received foot care services at a cost of $751,500.? He advised.

Mr. Campbell encouraged the graduates who were also trained as lay diabetes educators to promote the use of the NHFcard which provides subsidies for diabetic medication and diabetic supplies. He says 47,500 persons were enrolled with the NHFCard for diabetes and approximately 50% of them use their NHFCard each month.

Professor Morrison also warned the graduates, ?Now that you have received training and experience in foot care, do not overcharge patients for the services you will offer to them.?

The training programme for the Foot Care Assistants included instruction in the use of various chiropody tools, scalpel techniques, diagnosis and treatment of basic foot problems and dressing techniques. Practical experience was gained at Golden Age Homes and Infirmaries and has equipped the foot care assistants to effectively assess and treat any problems in the feet of diabetics thus helping to reduce the number of amputations performed.

NHF provided a grant of $2.5 Million for the Foot Care Assistants Training Programme and the Chairman for the NHF pledged the organization?s continued funding support for future training courses. The training project was lead by Mr. Owen Bernard, a chiropodist and Executive Director, DAJ.

Contact: Rosemarie Lee, Public Information Officer NHF, Tel: 906-1106

Shermaine Robotham, Public Relations Consultant, Tel: 997-5442

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NHF’s QMS is ISO – 9001:2015 Certified

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