Guyana Help The Kids (GHTK) is a registered Canadian charity with the goal of decreasing the neonatal and infant mortality in developing countries, particularly in Guyana.
|We will achieve this goal through sustainable changes within the healthcare sector. Our major focus has been to provide comprehensive education to local physicians, nurses and other allied healthcare professionals. In addition, we have been assisting with the procurement of specialized equipment to elevate the level of neonatal care.
The initial part of this project has been focused at the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC) with the opening of a new neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), an innovative paediatric residency program and neonatal nursing program.
We have been successful in decreasing the neonatal mortality at GPHC by forty percent (40%) in our first year.
|Our shared vision with the Ministry of Health in Guyana is to expand this program to the regional hospitals in New Amsterdam, Linden, Suddie and West Demerara. To date we have completed the NICUs at Linden and New Amsterdam and will be completing West Demerara and Suddie this year.|
Pediatric Residency Program:
In collaboration with the University of Guyana, Ministry of Health and the Georgetown Public Hospital (GPHC), we developed a paediatric residency program to train local physicians to become qualified paediatricians thereby increasing the number of specialists in the country.
The faculties from University of Toronto, McMaster University and other universities in North America have been traveling monthly to provide didactic and bedside teaching in keeping with the uniquely developed curriculum. The program currently has ten doctors in training.
We have graduated two paediatricians and currently have ten more in training.
Pediatric Nursing Training:
Nationwide Children’s Hospital, in collaboration with our organization and the Ministry of Health in Guyana, has developed a one-year neonatal nursing program at GPHC.
The first year has been completed and eleven nurses have graduated from the program and we currently have another seventeen in training. The program will be run for at least three consecutive years to ensure a full complement of neonatal nurses for the entire country.
NICU and Pediatric Equipment:
GHTK has already donated a number of essential pieces of NICU equipment to GPHC, Linden and New Amsterdam. These include incubators, warmers, bassinets, IV pumps, monitors, CPAP machines and ventilators. With the use of this equipment, a new Level Three, twenty-four bed neonatal intensive care unit was opened in March 2012 at GPHC, and two smaller NICUs (Level Two) at Linden and New Amsterdam.
Biomedical and Respiratory Care Support:
GHTK recognizes that there is a need for biomedical and respirator support to ensure functionality and longevity of the very sensitive equipment. Technical experts from Humber River Regional Hospital (Canada), Nationwide Children’s Hospital (USA) and the Hospital For Sick Kids (Canada) have volunteered to assist with this critical aspect of the program. We now have a committed biomedical technician dedicated to the program.
Research and Outcome:
It is necessary for GHTK to evaluate the ongoing processes objectively to ensure the benefit of these various interventions. Aside from the impact on infant mortality we are embarking on other specific research projects – the first to include “the impact of an infection control policy on the incidence of nosocomial infections and mortality at GPHC”. We have already demonstrated a forty (40%) drop in neonatal mortality and infections in the NICU at GPHC in the first year.