The Ministry of Public Health introduced seven public service announcement videos to educate the public on the signs of a heart attack and treatment available at the Georgetown Public Hospital.
The launch and screening of the PSAs were held today at Cara Lodge, Quamina Street. Minister of Public Health, Volda Lawrence, said the PSAs form part of efforts to reduce incidences of cardiac disease in Guyana.
“The release of these videos will greatly assist us in supporting this campaign of heightening awareness at all levels in every region so that measures can be put in place to help decrease the morbidity and mortality of coronary heart disease in Guyana,” Minister Lawrence said.
Cardiovascular deaths account for some 32 percent of deaths in Guyana while an estimated 22 percent of Guyanese are living with cardiovascular diseases Minister Lawrence noted.
The Ministry of Public Health has been vigorously pursuing its mandate to reduce incidences of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) across the country.
The PSAs were developed in collaboration with the Guyana Programme to Advance Cardiac Care (GPACC). Founder and Director of GPACC, Dr Debra Isaac, noted that education is critical to advancing cardiac care in Guyana.
“If the public doesn’t know what their risks are or what signs they should look for or: if they don’t know where they can get help what we have isn’t going to reach all of the people that need to be reached,” she said.
GPACC has been working with healthcare and ancillary staff in Guyana over the years educating and training them on diagnostic and therapeutic options in cardiac care. The GPHC and the GPACC share a longstanding relationship.
The Ministry of Public Telecommunications will soon begin distributing the PSAs to local stations. The announcements will also be adapted for radio broadcast.
Minister of Public Telecommunications, Catherine Hughes, singled out the media for the important role it has to play in this process. “We have come this far but the success of getting these messages out depends heavily on the media. We look forward to you airing them as much as you can.”
The PSA included information on the signs of a heart attack. It explains the treatment available by the GPHC and the reasons to trust the advice of health care providers. The announcements also provided testimonials from several persons including Attorney-at-Law Nigel Hughes and iconic singer Dave Martin.
By: Tiffny Rhodius.