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New Public Health Act will focus on patients’ rights - Min. Anthony

A modern Public Health Act is being drafted, and the first draft of this critical piece of legislation is slated to be completed in a matter of months.

This is according to Minister of Health Dr Frank Anthony, who was speaking at a workshop at the Duke Lodge Hotel.

The current Public Health Act has existed for over 80 years, and the Minister says Guyana’s goal is to provide world-class health care; therefore, it is essential that this act is drafted to meet the standards of the current society.

In the past, the act focused heavily on diseases, not human rights. However, in the new act, human rights will be focused on heavily.

“It is really a cross-cutting piece of legislation that will have an impact on every sector in our country…We have to devise legislation that is going to suit our unique situation. So while we may be able to look at practices they have and particular challenges, we have to customise it to suit our unique needs,” he said.

He also highlighted the need to revise some 20 pieces of legislation and introduce new ones to cater to modern health care.

Meanwhile, Advisor to the Minister, Dr Leslie Ramsammy, and PAHO/WHO Representative Dr Luis Codina praised Dr Anthony for embarking on this move as there is a need to have this legislation and others updated.

Over the next few days, a team will meet and engage in drafting the new Public Health Act.


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