OECS Commission supports Voluntary Counseling and Testing Workshop
OECS Media Release
Tuesday, May 24, 2022 — The OECS Commission supported a 5-day workshop held by the Millennium Heights Medical Complex (MHMC) on Voluntary Counselling and Testing (VCT), that took place from May 16th to 19th 2022. The workshop on Voluntary Counselling and testing was facilitated by Mrs. Patricia Modeste, a seasoned VCT trainer from the Planned Parenthood in Saint Lucia.
This training was an initiative of the recently established Occupational Health Department of the MHMC, represented by Dr. Rachel Thwaites. This department’s focus is the health, wellbeing, and safety of MHMC employees. To this end, the importance of building in-house capacity in the management of needlestick injuries and HIV testing was recognized as an area of priority.
A special lecture delivered by the Senior Technical Specialist-Quality Assurance Mr. Abraham Weekes on “Pharmaco-adherence” provided additional value to the training.
The beneficiaries of this workshop were Nurses, Doctors, Clinical Psychologists and Phlebotomist from the OKEU Hospital and of course citizens of Saint Lucia who would be the secondary recipients from the knowledge gained by the participants.
The participants benefited immensely, as they are now in a position to define and put into practice, the concepts learned on pharmaco-adherence and other related areas.
Through its HIV/TB Elimination Project (HTEP), the OECS remains committed to reducing the incidence of HIV in accordance with the HIV 90-90 targets. The efforts of this project have contributed to the elimination of mother to child transmission of HIV in the OECS countries of Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Montserrat and Saint Kitts and Nevis, a feat validated by the World Health Organisation (WHO) in 2017.
The OECS Pool Procurement Services continues to provide invaluable support for persons living with HIV, through ensuring continuous procurement and supply chain management of medicines and testing kits.
Note to Editors
Voluntary Counselling and Testing (VCT) refers to when a person chooses to undergo HIV/AIDS counselling so that they can make an informed decision about whether to be tested for HIV. It has proven to be beneficial in mitigating against the spread of HIV/AIDS.