Press Release

Ministry of Health & Social Development
Release Date:
Tuesday, 13 June 2023 - 8:50am

Minister for Health and Social Development Honourable Vincent O. Wheatley will be attending a Ministerial Meeting on Non-communicable Diseases (NCDS) and Mental Health in Barbados this week. 

Honourable Wheatley, accompanied by Acting Chief Medical Officer Dr. Ronald Georges, will join other regional ministers and attend the Small Island Developing States (SIDS) meeting in Bridgetown, Barbados from June 13 to 16.  

The Health Minister stated that his attendance at this meeting will give him the opportunity to meet with counterparts in the region, build synergies and relationships in his new role.  He said the meeting will also garner greater exposure to the topics of interest and how improvements can be made in NCDs and mental health, in the Territory.

 “It provides an excellent opportunity for the Virgin Islands to have a voice and direct contributions to the regional and international agreements, conventions and plans targeting NCDs and Mental Health. This will ensure that Virgin Islands issues are represented at the highest level,” Honourable Wheatley said. 

The meeting takes place ahead of the United Nations General Assembly High-level meeting on Universal Health Coverage in September.

The session is also being held in recognition of the high burden being faced on small island states in the areas of non-communicable diseases and mental health, as well as the impact of climate change, coupled with the impact COVID-19 has had on health and economies in these vulnerable states.

The conference follows the SIDS High-level technical meeting on non-communicable diseases and mental health held in January 2023, where representatives from small island states discussed the advancements and hindrances in meeting Sustainable Development Goal 3.4 that relates to non-communicable diseases and mental health.

Prime Minister of Barbados Honourable Mia Amor Mottley, Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO) Dr. Tedros Adhanom and Director of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) Dr. Jarbas Barbosa will address the three-day meeting.

The Ministry of Health and Social Development remains committed to partnering with international organisations to improve the health and social well-being of the people of the Virgin Islands.



Fitsroy Randall

Information Officer I
Ministry of Health and Social Development
Vornicia's House of Commerce, Long Bush
Tortola, British Virgin Islands
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