Minister De Weever welcomes new regional public health agency

Minister of Public Health, Social Development and Labour Hon. Cornelius de Weever welcomes the news of a new regional health organization, the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA).


CARPHA has been created by the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) with support from the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO)/World Health Organization (WHO) and international partners including Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom.

On Saturday PAHO Director Dr. Mirta Roses and CARPHA’s Executive Board Chairman, Minister of Health of Guyana Dr. Bheri Ramsaran, signed an agreement to carry out joint cooperation activities and public health interventions in the Caribbean.

Minister De Weever has met with several CARICOM Ministers of Public Health who attended the PAHO meeting regarding CARPHA. "I understand their objective, because the Caribbean as a region has and may have unique health priorities. It is important that they have a united voice when addressing international health initiatives," Minister of Cornelius de Weever said on Tuesday.

CARPHA will facilitate public health research to address common health problems in the region, including the rising epidemic of chronic non-communicable diseases, violence and injuries, and emerging and re-emerging diseases such as tuberculosis-HIV co-infection.

CARPHA comprises of the merging of operations of five regional health institutions: the Caribbean Epidemiology Centre (CAREC), the Caribbean Food and Nutrition Institute (CFNI), the Caribbean Health Research Council (CHRC), the Caribbean Environmental Health Institute (CEHI), and the Caribbean Regional Drug Testing Laboratory (CRDTL).

CARPHA was legally established on 2 July 2011 through an inter-governmental agreement signed by CARICOM Member States.

It is based in Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago, and is scheduled to become operational in January 2013.