Guyanese are urged to take full advantage of free screening and testing services available countrywide. These services provide early detection and treatment to a number of Non-Communicable Diseases that contribute to the high morbidity and mortalities rates in Guyana.
These were the sentiments of Minister of Public Health Volda Lawrence, “We need to start thinking and check, don’t take anything for what we would call a ‘wind pain’ or anything like that get it checked out, cancer we are asking our men and women to come in and be checked and so on and children, do not put them aside when they tell you that they are not feeling well or that something is happening to them. I’m asking you let us take life seriously and utilise the services provided by the taxpayers and ensure that we have a healthy lifestyle.”
Minister Lawrence added that when considering health statuses no minor illness or ailment must be taken for granted. She also said that not only are these services free but they are also accessible to all who may be in need of it.
Persons in Guyana can access these services at health centres, district and regional hospitals and even the main referral hospital which is the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC).
Meanwhile, as World Health Day was observed on Friday, April 07, 2017 under the international theme, “Depression, Let’s Talk!” Depression has been noted to be the major factor contributing to suicide worldwide. “Even as we celebrate World Health Day, I want to wish all Guyanese the ‘best of health’ but in order to do so I want to say to Guyanese that we have to start looking at our behavior patterns we have to take cognizance that we are responsible for our own health.”
Minister Lawrence in her official message for the day’s observance said, “Guyanese must muster the courage to talk openly about this (depression)”
Each year, approximately 15 to 20 per cent of a population will suffer some form of mental illness, globally. In estimation, Guyana’s current population reflects that 112,500 to 150,000 persons are likely to suffer from some form of depression.