Thirty five (35) persons were presented with Emergency Medical Alert devices by the Secretary for Finance and Enterprise Development, Mr Joel Jack today. The devices are part of the Emergency Medical Alert Programme launched in 2012 by the Chief Secretary the Honourable Mr Orville London. The Programme supports the elderly, the physically challenged and other vulnerable persons in Tobago by providing immediate access to emergency service providers through the activation of an Emergency Medical Alert device. The instrument is worn by the recipients in their homes and is triggered with one touch. The Police, Fire Service, the Tobago Emergency Management Agency (TEMA) and Tobago Emergency Medical Services (TEMS) Ambulance Service can all be accessed via this mechanism supported by the 211 call centre.
Secretary Jack in his remarks reaffirmed the commitment of the Tobago House of Assembly to the population stating that:
“The THA through this Programme continues to demonstrate itself as a caring institution looking after the needs of all Tobagonians. While the THA’s resources have been constrained we continue to provide to our citizens what is needed to live comfortably.”
He also commended the supporting agencies including TEMS, Tobago Information Technology Limited (TITL), the Police and Fire services for their support in ensuring the continuity of a programme which started as a pilot a little over two years ago. The TITL developed the system, manages the supporting 211 call centre and maintains the devices.
To date, close to eight hundred persons have benefitted from the Emergency Medical Alert Programme the majority of those being the elderly, who run the risk of becoming critically ill or incapacitated in their homes. Mr Jack also announced the expansion of the programme in the upcoming months to include mobile units which will widen coverage of the devices beyond the confines of the home. Technical staff at Tobago Information Technology Limited are conducting the preparatory work to facilitate this advancement.