Regional bank CIBC FirstCaribbean has hailed nurses as pillars of the Caribbean healthcare system.
In paying tribute to regional nurses on International Nurses Day on Thursday May 12, 2022, chief executive officer of CIBC FirstCaribbean Colette Delaney heaped praise on the profession, noting that nurses were “the pillars of the regional healthcare system and an integral part of the promotion and maintenance of wellness across the region”.
She said nowhere was this more evident in recent times than in their heroic efforts on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic, which sadly also claimed the lives of nurses around the world, including the Caribbean region.
“We cherish and honour our nurses who despite great personal risk turned up for duty to do what they do best – offer care comfort and healing. We also remember with love and deep gratitude those who were lost to the pandemic,” Delaney said.
She noted that CIBC FirstCaribbean had a deep commitment to the development of nursing in the region and was the nurse training partner with the SickKids Foundation’s SickKids-Caribbean Initiative (SCI), a partnership with the University of the West Indies (UWI), Ministries of Health, hospitals, and institutions in six Caribbean countries.
This partnership focuses on building sustainable local capacity to diagnose, treat and manage paediatric cancers and blood disorders.
As nurse training partner the bank supported the training of 41 nurses in Haematology/Oncology through the SCI-UWISON Paediatric Haematology/Oncology Nursing Education Program (PHONEP) at the University of the West Indies School of Nursing (UWISON) in Trinidad and Tobago.
Fourteen nurses from Jamaica, thirteen from Trinidad and Tobago, five from the Bahamas, four from Barbados, three from St. Vincent and the Grenadines and two from
St. Lucia graduated from the one-year training programme.
“The SickKids-Caribbean Initiative continues to improve health outcomes for children in the Caribbean with cancer and blood disorders, thanks to the generous support of partners like CIBC FirstCaribbean,” said Ted Garrard, CEO, SickKids Foundation.
“Since 2013, the program has seen transformational progress towards education, advocacy and specialty nurse training to ensure the delivery of quality care,” he added.
Delaney is also the chair of the bank’s charitable arm, The FirstCaribbean ComTrust Foundation, which signed an initial MOU with SickKids in 2013 offering US$1 million support over seven years, and later renewed that support for a similar amount in 2020 over a five-year period.
The SickKids-Caribbean Initiative (SCI) has been helping health care professionals improve health outcomes for children with cancer and blood disorders, by among other things training specialised professionals including doctors and nurses.
The initiative is helping nurses across the region become change agents for their communities. The skills they have obtained from this program help them ensure all patients receive high-quality care at what is the most vulnerable time of their lives. (PR)