The ?Lady Janet? is a dental boat that has been providing oral health services to remote Guyanese locations for more than a year. The vessel is equipped with a health team that visits riverain areas and provides dental and medical services.
Launched by former Minister of Health Dr. Leslie Ramsammy, the boat is named Lady Janet after former first lady and president, the late Janet Jagan, in recognition of her commitment to heathcare in Guyana.
Janet Jagan was pivotal to the transformation of health care in Guyana, having first started developing health centers and health posts. Under her watch as health minister, the country benefited from about 50 health centers constructed countrywide.
Dr. Ramsammy, at the launching of the boat in 2011, said when he became minister of health, Guyana only had about 17 dentists, a number too inadequate to supply the nation?s dental needs. Guyana now has more than 36 practicing dentists; a result of the ?ministry?s vision of ensuring dental providers in all regions of Guyana, and even more, ensuring a dentist in every sub-region of Guyana.?
This vision has been realized because of the Cheddi Jagan Dental School, and Ramsammy said the launching of the boat is another effort on the part of the ministry to provide better health care for everyone. He noted Guyana can now speak of being one of the few countries that can claim an ?aquatic health boat.?
At intervals, the boat offers specialized services such as dentistry and eye care, and serves as a specialist ambulance along the Pomeroon River, taking emergency cases to the Oscar Joseph Hospital.
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