The Mental Health Foundation St. Maarten to hold 3rd Symposia

International year of nursing: From the lady with the lamp to nurse practitioner

100 years Florence Nightingale

The Mental Health Foundation St. Maarten has successfully organized 2 Symposia on St. Maarten and because of the growing interest in psychiatry has decided to organize a third. Acknowledging the role of nurses who are the ongoing support of patients and their families in coping with mental illnesses. 

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In St. Maarten psychiatric care is fairly new, the Mental Health Foundation commenced with its activities in May 2006 and is developing beyond all expectations. Finding qualified persons for the ever-increasing workload has been a challenge, therefore all opportunities are being embraced to enhance knowledge and share experiences.

2010 is a special year for Nurses because they celebrate 100 years Florence Nightingale.

Through Florence Nightingale nursing has become an acknowledged profession and has developed into what it is today.

As a theme we have chosen:


International year of nursing

From the lady with the lamp to nurse practitioner

100 years Florence Nightingale

The name of Florence Nightingale (1820-1910) has been revered and respected across the world.

The theme "Nursing, Culture and Community" The idea is chosen with the intention to combineds knowledge, and experience that encourages leadership amongst health care workers and to acknowledge nurses who have contributed to the development of health care on St. Maarten.

 "You must inform public opinion…" Florence Nightingale, 1893

From her own deep and prolonged experience with personal health issues, she advocated for all nurses to be continually renewed to sustain their effective, compassionate and caring practices. She called all these approaches "Health Nursing."

To achieve these goals: "a symposium to share knowledge and enhance community care developments," is organized

The idea of this symposium is to share with others the developments in nursing and specifically nursing and psychiatry. Further more since institutionalizing psychiatric patients is now seen as the last resource, the main focus of the symposium will be on community-based care.

As organizers we believe that this mini-symposium fulfills a need, benefits patients and supports many in caring for psychiatric patients. The role of nursing and the social aspects of psychiatric care need more exposure in order to reduce the stigma on psychiatry.

The success of this symposium relates to professionalism, timely planning and organization but also in the supports of stakeholders and sponsors. With this awareness the organizers set out to successfully complete this mission during nurses week.

Lecturers at the Symposium are:

Dr. Matroos Psychiatrist who visits the Windward Islands on a regular basis and who has been active in promoting mental care on the Netherland Antilles for many years. He will discuss a multidisciplinary approach to sleeping disorders.

Sonja Eursulita, has a masters degree in nursing is well known on St. Maarten for hher involvement in nurses education in cooperation with the education department of St. Maarten Medical center.

Remko Uenk, recently graduated as a Nurse Practitioner in Aruba, through one line education with the University of Nijmegen in the Netherlands. A nurse practitioner is registered nurse who has completed specific advanced nursing education (generally a master’s degree or doctoral degree) and training in the diagnosis and management of common as well as a few complex medical conditions.

Ed van Leeuwen and Hans van de Moosdijk are Social Psychiatric Nurses who are specialized in assertive community treatments (ACT) a treatment model used in the US and Europe and know to be an effective model in approaching mental illnesses in communities.

Dr. Lockie Johnson is well know on St. Maarten, has done considerable research locally also with regards to culture and beliefs

Dr. Pytha Jessurun, is psychiatrists at Capriles Clinic in Curaçao has also work on St. Maarten and will deal with explanatory models of psychiatric illnesses.

All interested are welcome to register at the Mental Health Foundation, registration fee is Naf. 50.00 or $ 30.00 or ei*********@ho*****.com call 5421677.