Seven Persons Now Certified To Ship Infectious Substances

Mr. Skerrit and Top Participant

Basseterre, St. Kitts, June 17, 2013 (SKNIS): Seven participants, who attended the Biorisk Management for the Laboratory and Infectious Substance Shipping Training Workshop at the JNF General Hospital Conference Room, have recently been certified to ship Category-A infectious substances as well as other categories of infectious substances.

The four day workshop, which came to an end on June 14, attracted participants from both Public and Private Clinical Laboratories.

Sacha Wallace-Sankarsingh, Biorisk Manager for the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) and facilitator of the workshop, explained why it was important for all sectors to attend.

“We recognise that it is important to have everyone on board for delivering quality health care service,” she stated. “…It is [also] important to draw experience that all of these different agencies provide as well as to strengthen existing networks. When we develop networks to share experiences, we learn from each other as we go forward.”

Mrs. Wallace-Sankarsingh expressed that she is very pleased that St. Kitts and Nevis now has a cadre of persons, both in public and private laboratory settings, who have been trained in the concept of biosafety, biosecurity and are now certified to ship Category-A infectious substances as well as other categories of infectious substances.

Andrew Skerritt, Permanent Secretary for the Ministry of Health also expressed his pleasure with the seven participants who were able to receive the highest level of certification for the field.

“We are one step closer to fulfilling our obligations under our International Health Regulations (IHR) agreement,” he noted. “We are signatory to the IHR and we have obligations to fulfil by 2015.”

Mr. Skerritt concluded that the participants were also able to learn more within the lab setting and to strengthen what is already in place.

“We can never start from scratch,” he explained. “We have to keep chipping away and learning more and more and hopefully at some point we will become a fully accredited institution.”

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