The Barbados Defence Force Field Medical Facility (BDF FMF) has attained Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) Type 1 certification from the World Health Organization (WHO) verification team.
The verification and assessment visit was conducted over the period 25 – 26 September 2019. The BDF FMF components were assessed based on the EMT Medical Team Global Standards and included reviews of its administration, personnel, logistical and medical requirements needed to be self-sufficient for deployments up to two weeks.
Given the BDF’s experience responding to sudden onset disasters, conducting humanitarian assistance and disaster relief operations locally and regionally and, the necessity for medical services surge capacity due to the evolving complexity of the contemporary operations environment, the project to develop the FMF was conceptualized in late 2017.
To this end, after engagement with the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) and in consultation with Lieutenant Colonel (Ret’ d) Florence Gittens, the project to establish a Field Medical Facility that would meet the World Health Organization Emergency Medical Team standards. The development of the Field Medical Facility serves to strengthen Barbados’ disaster response mechanism, specifically in the area of the provision of health services and also strengthens the regional response mechanism activated through the RSS.
The BDF intends to develop a Type 2 EMT which would see the inclusion of an operating theater, X-ray and lab facilities, and in-patient wards. This Type 2 facility would be operational on a 24-hour basis.