Opposition Member of Parliament (MP) and former Foreign Affairs Minister, Dr Karen Cummings says that it was due to the efforts of the coalition government that Guyana’s suicide rate dropped significantly in three years.

“On our taking the reign of office in 2015, we inherited a suicide rate of 34.7 per 100, 000; but by 2017, the rate was 24.63 per 100,000 and by 2018, the suicide rate fell to 18. 88 per 100, 000 thus the evidence shows that the APNU/ AFC Coalition government utilized the correct approach to lessen the suicide rate and thus moving Guyana from being the country with the highest suicide rate per capita,” she told the House during Day Three of the 2020 Budget Debate yesterday at the Arthur Chung Conference Centre (ACCC), Liliendaal.

Dr Cummings, during her presentation, called on the Irfaan Ali led administration to ensure that valiant efforts are made to achieve the Sustainable Development Goal No. 3 (SDG # 3) – the health and well-being of the Guyanese populace.

She stressed that the three main pillars for optimal health, namely, universal access to public health coverage, universal primary health care, and preventative health must be realized.

The former Minister said that there is still much work to be done in the Public Health Sector, and urged the Government to ensure that programmes that began under the coalition administration are allowed to be completed.

“Malaria, Tuberculosis, and HIV Programmes are on target to reach their goals. On that note Mr. Speaker we wish to observe that Guyana is on the precipice of being declared Filaria Free and the last round is scheduled to begin in October through November, 2020. Please do not take Guyana backward,” she stressed.


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