Certificates distributed to participants at Communicable Diseases Control Course
GREAT BAY, Sint Maarten (DCOMM) – Participants from the Ministry of Public Health, Social Development and Labor, Collective Prevention Service (CPS) along with representatives from Saba, Bonaire and Sint Eustatius took part in a one-week workshop that concluded on October 27 at the University of St. Martin.
The course was developed by the Dutch National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) and the Netherlands School of Public & Occupational Health (NSPOH). The five-day basic course covered the broad foundation of communicable disease control and epidemiology.
The course’s objective was to strengthen the knowledge of core principles of communicable disease control (CDC). Participants included general practitioners, nurses, infection prevention experts, and public health professionals.
The topics covered during the workshop were the essential pillars of CDC: principles of communicable diseases control, organization and legislation in communicable disease control, immunology and diagnostics, surveillance and outbreak investigation, vaccinations, and vaccination programs.
In these sessions, attendees also exchanged their viewpoints, from the local level, and contemplated previous public health interventions and hindrances.
These conversations severed as the basis for formulation practical public health tactics tailored to confront each island's distinct difficulties.
Local participants in addition to CPS’s included participants from White & Yellow Cross Care Foundation, and the Sint Maarten Medical Center.
The basic course was made possible by the Dutch Caribbean Public Health Expertise Network (DUCaPHEN) that was established in June 2023.
DUCaPHEN is a collaboration between the six islands in the Caribbean part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands and the RIVM, bringing together several public health professionals and medical specialists from both the Caribbean region and the European part of the Netherlands.
The aim of DUCaPHEN is to strengthen public health across the six islands in a collaborative manner. One of the pillars of this aim is strengthen public health in the region through the exchange of knowledge and expertise.
The overall objective of DuCaPHEN is to prepare for future pandemics and strengthen public health skills and collaborate with the Caribbean region of the Kingdom where public health is concerned.
DuCaPHEN supports and facilitates the local Public Health departments in epidemiology and communicable disease control.
The building blocks for the Caribbean HUB are capacity building of local Public Health, an education, training, and exercise program, a regional structure for epidemiology and surveillance, and regional research and prevention projects.
This way, sustainable construction of knowledge, innovation, research, and uniformity in data management can be facilitated and the opportunities for more flexibility to scale up personnel is created.