With new radiation safety law, Guyana can become premier diagnostic healthcare provider- Dr Ramsammy


Guyana’s diagnostic capabilities will be significantly improved to provide premier services with the Radiation Safety and Security Amendment Bill 2022 passed in the National Assembly last week, advisor to the Health Minister, Dr Leslie Ramsammy has said.

The bill provides the legal framework to promote safe and protective measures for beneficiaries of treatment using this method and the professionals using the equipment and conducting the procedures.

Dr Ramsammy on Monday told a delegation from the Pan-American Health Organization/ World Health Organization (WHO) that Guyana’s diagnostic capabilities are undergoing a massive transformation and so the laws and regulations that promote safe use are important.

“The public’s perception of the health sector in Guyana and around the world will continue to be focused on the hospital and whether you can be diagnosed and treated and the kind of treatment you get, [but] the government of Guyana through the Ministry is determined to ensure that we pay attention to all the things that come before the hospital, one of those is legislative capacity,” Dr Ramsammy said.

PAHO representative Dr Luis Codina, Advisor to the Health Minister Dr Leslie Ramsammy and Mission Leader Dr Marlo Libel (Photo: DPI/ July 24, 2023)

Acknowledging the importance of regulating this usage to protect individuals, society, and the environment, a board with representatives from various public and private sector agencies, such as the Guyana Revenue Authority, the Ministry of Health, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the Ministry of Labour will be formed.

The bill was drafted by the Attorney General’s Chambers, in collaboration with the Ministry of Health, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the International Atomic Energy Agency.

Additionally, the government has reached out to international agencies to improve the services offered at the National Public Health Laboratory. Dr Ramsammy said it is the government’s hope that this lab will become a premiere facility responding to health needs across the Caribbean.

“The Minister of Health wants to make the national public health lab of Guyana the premiere public health lab in this region; we are working with CARPHA [Caribbean Public Health Agency], we are working with our friends in Argentina, so that we could elevate our national public health lab but having one good central lab does not solve the problem.

“We have to ensure that our laboratories in the region have greater capacity both in terms of human resource and equipment,” Dr Ramsammy said.


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