Guyana witnessed substantive improvements in cardiology – Min. Anthony


Guyana has seen substantive improvements in cardiology, which can be attributed to improvements in primary healthcare and governments investments in the health sector.

Minister of Health Dr Frank Anthony highlighted this achievement as he addressed the Annual Cardiology Symposium 2024 on Saturday Morning at the Arthur Chung Conference Centre, Liliendaal.

The event, which is dedicated to advancing cardiac care, will bring together healthcare professionals, experts, and stakeholders from across the country. It features informative presentations, engaging panel discussions, and networking opportunities, providing invaluable insights into the latest developments and best practices in cardiology at GPHC and Guyana.

“Over recent years, and more particularly 3-4 years, we have seen substantive improvements in medicine generally in Guyana. But particularly in cardiology, we would have seen a lot of developments, and that is because we have, as a government, have been making lots of investments in the area of health and particular in the area of cardiology,” Dr Anthony stated as he addresses health professionals.

Persons were able to get information about heart health at the symposium. (Photo: DPI/ April 20, 2024)

He noted that much emphasis was placed on primary health care and preventative medicine to reduce the burden of complications.

He noted too, that the “HEARTS” protocol was adopted. It is helping to provide better cardiovascular care to patients. It is also implemented in 171 different health centres across the country.

While using the guidelines, new medications were introduced that are more effective and better control the various cardiovascular conditions.

“One of the challenges that we still have is that while we have introduced this programme, we have seen that there is a still a need for better compliance of our patients,” he stated, while noting that more needs to be done to ensure patients comply with the guidelines.

In addition, laboratory testing, diagnostics have also improved at the primary level of healthcare with EKG’s and Ultrasounds widely available.

“We are very proud of the advancements that we have made,” Dr Anthony stated, as he noted the improvements made in general medicine at the Georgetown Public Hospital (GPHC).

He also noted the increase in the number of patients accessing cardiology care at the GPHC.

Eighty patients accessed services in 2019, 89 in 2020, 332 in 2021, 500 in 2022 and 825 in 2023.

“So, you see how that has climbed over the years and I expect that during this year we will also see many more patients,” he noted.

Dr Anthony also noted that the Pediatric Cardiac programme, which was stopped between 2015 and 2020, was restarted.

“Having purchased the equipment, trained people, we have been able to restart that programme now and last year we did 18 surgeries, this year already we have finished eight, and with two more teams coming in during the year, we are hoping that at least 30 pediatric surgeries would be completed during this year,” he stated.

The ministry has also partnered with several universities outside of Guyana to train medical doctors in various specialties including cardiology.

Work is also being done to develop national guidelines for cardiovascular care so it can be standardised across the system. (Extracted from the Department of Public Information)

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