The government is moving ahead with plans to upgrade the Spanish Town Hospital in St Catherine.
Speaking during a tour of the facility on Friday, Health Minister Dr Christopher Tufton, says this will upgrade the institution from a Type B to a Type A hospital.
As a Type B facility, there are restrictions on the specialist services the hospital provides.
The upgrading will enable the facility to better serve the wide range of cases from St Catherine and neighboring parishes.
Dr. Tufton says several short and medium term challenges at the facility will be addressed.
He commended the staff for going above and beyond the call of duty.
And, Minister Tufton, says over 17-thousand people have benefited to date under the Public Sector Pharmacy Partner Pilot Programme.
The initiative, which was launched last December, involves a partnership with private pharmacies for the dispensing of drugs to patients of public health facilities.
Dr. Tufton says the programme has significantly reduced waiting time for patients.
Administered by the National Health Fund, NHF, the Public Sector Pharmacy Partner Pilot Programme seeks to improve the delivery of service to patients in the public health system by
giving them more options to fill their prescriptions.
Six pharmacies in Kingston and five in Clarendon are participating in the pilot.
Dr. Tufton says the number of participating pharmacies should increase to 50 this year.
Dr. Christopher Tufton, Minister of Health.