The main goal of this section of the Laboratory Management component was to improve the capability of groups of Caribbean health care providers and stakeholders to implement the essential elements of a Quality System, using didactic and practical training interventions. The focus was on procedures to improve the skills needed to maintain laboratory equipment and procure services, supplies and equipment that would optimize administrative, technical and operational efficiency of laboratories.
In addition, there was the objective of enabling cytology laboratories to provide more efficient, high-quality services to support an integrated and programmatic approach to the prevention and control of cervical cancer. Implementation of the strategic plan for cervical cancer prevention and control in the Caribbean, aims to reduce cervical cancer mortality and decrease invasive cancer incidence.
The main outcomes of the laboratory systems section were:
- Production of regional procurement and inventory management guidelines based on guidelines and Acts promulgated in various Caribbean countries. The guidelines incorporate internationally accepted procurement procedures as advocated by procurement professionals and training institutions (CIPS, MIND).
- Persons (176) from laboratories, procurement units, and central medical stores trained in Procurement and Inventory management during workshops of 1 to 5 days duration. 15 participants from one workshop qualified through voluntarily written examination to apply for certification as Certified Purchasing Personnel from American Certification Institute and the American Purchasing Society
- Project report on a comparative study, as a result of collaboration with Aruba of procurement procedures and regulations in six countries chosen for size and language (English, Dutch, Spanish).
- Laboratory analysts and biomedical engineers and technicians trained to advocate that Standard bidding documents and Purchasing contracts specify that the manufacturer provide factory training for biomedical personnel as an integral component for evaluating Bids and awarding contracts. They were trained to establish planned preventive maintenance schedules and monitor implementation of service contracts by suppliers.
Formation of Biomedical Professionals Association of the Caribbean (BiPAC) to facilitate:
- Continuing education of BMs
- Advocacy to regional training institutions for establishment of programmes for biomedical engineering starting at the technician level
- Establishment or deepening of relationships with other engineering and health professionals regionally and internationally
Assessment of infrastructure (human, physical and material) in 11 cytology laboratories and readiness for practice of cyto-screeners trained in Martinique and home country.