Arrindell tours mental health facilities

POSTED: 08/24/11 5:57 PM

St. Maarten –President of parliament Gracita Arrindell met with Mental Health Foundation director Eileen Healy and psychiatrist Sachin Gandotra at their new facility in Cay Hill on Friday.
Arrindell took a tour of the facility and discussed the challenges the foundation encounters and the progress it has made.

The Mental Helath Foundation has 500 registered clients and actively provides services to approximately 260. The facility is well underway to providing 24-hour service and is currently in the process of adding six to eight psychiatric nurses to the current staff.
Healy said finding local qualified staff was a challenge and suggested that the island consider developing a nursing program.
“The objective of these sessions is to have a better understanding of entities and institutions that are subsidized by government. National laws that these institutions are governed by also need to be looked into besides funding requirements with respect to the products and services they offer the community,” Arrindell said.
“For example, the MHF has been working under legislation that dates back to 1920. In 2010 legislation under the former Netherlands Antilles was revised, however it still does not address certain issues relevant to mental health care. Members of Parliament have a role to play here.”

Arrindell said that she will pass on the information she received to her fellow-parliamentarians, who in turn can prepare themselves in advance for a Central Committee meeting with the MHF.
Arrindell was also informed about the foundation’s working relationships with the Capriles Clinic in Curacao, Turning Point, the police and the White & Yellow Cross.

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