Workshop on annual Health Report 2022 points out areas of priorities |29 July 2023
- Ministry of Health reiterates call to individuals to improve their health
The Ministry of Health has said the one and a half-day workshop on the annual Health Sector Performance Report of 2022 has shown that there are areas for improvement within the health sector, although not everything can be fixed all at once.
This was pointed out during a press conference organised yesterday at the end of the workshop, which started on Thursday at the STC conference room in Victoria.
Present to elaborate on the outcome of the workshop and future plans, were the ministry’s principal secretary, Dr Bernard Valentin; the chief executive of the Health Care Agency, Dr Danny Louange; the ministry’s principal policy analyst, Dr Sanjeev Pugazhendhi; the director general for Public Health, Dr Meggy Louange and resident representative of the World Bank Organisation, Dr Rex Mpazanje.
When addressing the media, Dr Sanjeev Pugazhendhi said that the workshop and the dissemination of the report has shown there were various areas for improvement.
“We have done the exercise to flag and take note of areas that needed more focus, and one of the priorities is the growing state of obesity in the country, which is an urgent concern for the health sector,” he stated.
He added that the next step was to look into why obesity has increased in the country and what can be done to reduce it, by identifying different programmes that would yield results among the population.
“We want to work with other sectors also, so that we can make interventions with evidence-based research that shows that this can have an impact on the risk or lifestyle, and that it leads to obesity,” said Dr Sanjeev.
He added that another issue raised in the report was the high number of death by cancer where another priority would be to strengthen the screening programmes as early detection could help immensely in the prevention of death.
“We have piloted a programme to test and screen for organ cancer last year and we have learned many things, which we would have to modify and later launch on a larger scale,” he said.
They are also introducing a new method of doing pap-smear where results will be provided within a shorter period of time and one where the procedure would be much more comfortable for the patient.
For his part, Dr Valentin said that emphasis was put on the progress of the service but the most important part was the state of health of Seychelles’ population.
“It is because the population’s health is in this state that we need to have interventions on a national basis. And today in the consultation, many have raised the question ‘where is the ‘mon lasante, mon responsabilite’ campaign?’ Today it is more important than ever to put emphasis on responsibility of one’s health,” he stated.
PS Valentin reiterated that families should work together to better their health and help and support each other. He also pointed out how important it was for individuals to play their role to better their health.
Dr Valentin said although the ministry was alarmed and worried by the state of the population’s health, it was not despaired.
“We are worried because when comparing our country with other countries like us, the difference is alarming. However we can address these health problems that exist to make sure that life expectancy continues to increase, which is a good mark to identify the improvement of the nation’s health.”
The workshop was organised by the Ministry of Health in partnership with the World Health Organisation and it brought together health professionals and audiences outside of health.
During its second day yesterday the participants looked at how to improve health care, with the involvement of key partners such as the private sector as well as the role of individuals.
The annual Health-Sector Performance Report gives an account of progress made by the health sector and is part of the ministry’s governance function and for sector accountability.