Women residing in the south of the island were granted the opportunity to gain information on maintaining healthy lifestyles following a women’s health fair held at the Vieux-Fort Wellness Centre.
Public Health Nursing Supervisor for Region 5 Jasmine Daniel said the activity was necessary and timely as it catered to working women who are unable to access the service during the working week and those who can’t afford the medical services.
“This health fair we think was very important because we saw some cases of breast cancer and cervical cancer in our region and with early detection we really want to echo the importance of early detection and screening,” Daniel said.
She added that with early detection and screening someone will be able to get early treatment and diagnosis because breast cancer and cervical cancer does not necessarily need to be a death sentence.
“If you get the early treatment and early diagnosis, you can get treated and you don’t necessarily have to lose a loved one,” Daniel said.
Gretchen Jacobs-Mercier, a participant at the health fair, says she was extremely grateful for this activity and encourages other women to get health checks done regularly.
“Cancer runs in my family, both breast cancer and colon cancer, so I have always been well aware that this is something I personally need to stay well up to date on, my wellness checks and the different tests like the pap smear that are available. I came today so thankful that it was going to be so close to home and free of charge and it was going to be on a Sunday so I could actually attend to it and be prompt about it. You’ve got to know how well you are and how well you are not. So, you got to come and start from some point to know where you are health wise and then you just have to monitor it. It’s critical,” said Jacobs-Mercier.
Another participant, Natasha Toussaint, says she too was pleased to gain information which will empower her to improve her overall health.
“I heard that it was open to the public and I thought that it was necessary to come here today to find out if I have any underlying issues medically and that I could get the different benefits like your mental, your nutrition and other medical requirements checks,” she said.
The women’s health fair offered the services of breast exam, pap smear, gynecology consultation, dental services and sexual and reproductive health consultation.
The fair also featured information on various health topics such as mental health, breast health and healthy lifestyles.