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Feb 20, 2019

MOH Launches HR Health Strategic Plan

The Ministry of Health unveiled a human resources health strategic plan. The plan is to ensure that there is equitable distribution of appropriately and skilled workers in the health sector. The need to focus on the human resources is to offer stronger support to achieve health outcomes in Belize – and by extension help to meet the targets set in Belize’s Health Sector Plan 2014-2024. News Five’s Andrea Polanco tells us more about this plan that will be used to guide the human resources health targets for the next five years.


Andrea Polanco, Reporting

Today, the Ministry of Health launched a plan called “Belize Human Resources for Universal Health Strategic Plan 2019-2024”. C.E.O. Ramon Figueroa says this plan is critical to the delivery of services because it looks at the well-being and support of the people who provide health care.


Ramon Figueroa

Dr. Ramon Figueroa, C.E.O., Ministry of Health

“You can have the best equipment and the best infrastructure and if you don’t have the staff to provide the services, I think staffing, human resources, is the core of any service and in particularly a service oriented organization like the Ministry of Health, its human resource is a critical factor in the delivery of quality health care and quality services to the population.”


A situational analysis was done to find out the key areas of failure and human resources gap in order to develop a strategy for the next ten years. This five year plan is to help address human resources needs in the health sector.  C.E.O. Ramon Figueroa says the plan looks at a number of critical staffing issues. The issues of availability, distribution, working conditions and training of health teams – all help to ensure that the right personnel are in the right positions to provide health care services.


Dr. Ramon Figueroa

“It is one, ensuring that we have the right mix of personnel to provide the kind of services that the population needs. So it is based on your case mix that you see in the region. For example you have a lot of chronic hypertension. People have to be trained in that area. That is one thing and the other thing is the whole aspect of retention. We need to have the numbers; quality and trained personnel and we need to be able to retain personnel.”


According to the World Health Organization, there will be a shortage of 12.9 million health care workers worldwide by 2035. One of the challenges that Belize faces is the retention of trained Belizeans in our health care system. Many of them migrate to seek other opportunities. Figueroa explains how the Ministry of Health wants to change that with this plan.


Dr. Ramon Figueroa

“The whole retention aspect for staffing, healthcare workers and particularly for nursing is an element of this strategic plan. I don’t think we put enough attention into the retention. It is not only about money. It has to do with how we treat our staff, the working environment, the support, the team building. So there is a lot of different ways and means which we can retain our staff. It is not only about money, but yes that is one of the key elements of the strategic plan.”


Reporting for News Five, I’m Andrea Polanco.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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