SINT EUSTATIUS (ORANJESTAD) – The Public Entity of Sint Eustatius (OLE), Sint Eustatius Health Care Foundation (SEHCF) and the Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport (VWS) signed a joint declaration of intent on Monday July 27th, in order to boost the quality of health care on the island.
The OLE and SEHCF have taken a necessary step to greatly improve the health care on Statia. The COVID pandemic has made clear that the cooperation between the Public Health Department of the OLE, SEHCF and the various other health care stakeholders must be more efficient and effective, so that there is better care for the residents of Statia.
Apart from the current crisis, the health care system on Statia has a lot of room for improvement.
In order to make high-quality, efficient medical care accessible and available to the residents of Statia, improved structural coordination is required between the SEHCF, Health Insurance Office ZVK, the Public Health Department (GGD) and various other care providers on Statia. A Steering Committee will be set up for this purpose, comprised of representatives of the Supervisory Board of SEHCF, OLE and VWS. They will monitor the change processes for all the local health care entities involved.
To develop and implement this vision, additional reinforcement in the form of a Chief Medical Officer (CMO) will be employed by the SEHCF for a minimum of 6 months, financed by the Ministry (VWS). Within the hospital, Queen Beatrix Medical Center, the CMO has the task of lifting the hospital’s internal medical organization to a higher level. The SEHCF will make the CMO available to simultaneously function as Healthcare Manager/Coordinator-COVID-19. In that capacity he will be responsible for greatly improving the collaboration between the Queen Beatrix Medical Center, as the primary care provider the Public Health Department (GGD) and the various other health care providers of Statia. Improved preparations for the COVID-19 response of the entire white column on the island will also be part of the task package. The Healthcare Manager/Coordinator COVID-19 will be accountable to the above-mentioned Steering Committee.
All parties agree that every Statian has the right to accessible and good quality care. A strong foundation must be laid for a future-proof structure of health care on Statia and for adequate facilities that meet the applicable quality norms. This will result in prevention of (chronic) diseases and better care for patients, including in the event of hurricanes and in other crisis situations.