Professor Henry FraserArchitecural Historian / Heritage Consultant
Chairman, Sentinel Committee, Barbados National Trust
Writer, TV Presenter, National Orator & Motivational Speaker
Professor Emertius, Medicine and Clinical Pharmacology.
Immediate Past Dean, Faculty of Medical Sciences.
University of the West Indies, Cave Hill Campus, Barbados.


Article Index

But we build on the shoulders of the giants of the past – the research of the late Professor Rolf Richards, the first person to study what I call the Caribbean “Obesidemic” – of Sir Ken Stuart, of Dr. Theo Poon King, of Dr. Gloria Beckles and the late Dr. George Miller, of Sir George Alleyne himself and of Professor Trevor Hassell – all of whose work over 50 years has led the way for us.

And the University of the West Indies has increasingly focused its research on the growing epidemic, across our medical faculties and especially in the Research Units of the Tropical Medicine Research Institute in Jamaica and Barbados, where we have defined the problems, elucidated risk factors and addressed solutions, while desperately trying to build the skills and capacity we need to do the job well.

Our challenge, ladies and gentlemen, is to work together both to build research capacity and to use what we have built productively, to tackle more effectively the key problems of:

    Data collection

    Behavioural Risk Factor (BRF) Surveillance

    Research on behaviour change

    Primary prevention

    Monitoring and evaluating effectiveness of intervention – this is most important!

    The question of evidence over myths and quackery, and

    The social and financial mechanisms for change, such as:
    Tobacco control
    Healthy food supplies
    Green spaces and twon planning issues supporting physical and mental health

And the process for coordinating them, specifically National Chronic Non-Communicable Disease Commissions (NCN-CDCs).

Finally Chairman, the synergies that can result from full partnership between Governments, University and other agencies such as CHRC, PAHO, WHO and CAREC especially, can transform the health of our people, accelerate national development and realise the fulfilment of happy, healthy Caribbean communities.

The University, through its Medical Faculties, Research Centres, Social, Economic and Education Departments, can provide governments with research and policy formulation for translating research into action, especially through effective public health leadership training, which is a major priority.

Of course, we need a few more tools, and I hope today’s summit will produce and perhaps add to the Declaration a line item for research in our health budgets. One possible source of this could be from the increased taxation of tobacco and alcohol, and it would greatly accelerate the results of this regional effort on behalf of our people.

I can confidently speak on behalf of our Vice Chancellor, our medical research leaders Professor Forrester, Professor Wilks and Dr. Hennis, and all the members of our UWI team, in saying that the UWI is at the service of our governments and our people, in helping to determine the way forward and translate this Declaration of Port of Spain into positive action. The magic word, Chairman, is ‘Partnership, partnership, partnership.’

I thank you.”

Henry Fraser Historic Houses Of Barbados Book CoverHistoric Houses of Barbados
Written by Henry Fraser & Ronnie Huges.
Available at all book leading book stores in Barbados.

Henry Fraser Treasures Of Barbados Book CoverTreasures of Barbados
Written by Sir George Alleyne and edited by Henry Fraser.
Available at the UWI Bookshop the publishers.

Henry Fraser Chattle House Book CoverBarbados Chattel Houses
Written by Henry Fraser and Bob Kiss.
Available at all leading book stores.

Henry Fraser A-Z Barbados Book CoverA-Z of Barbados Heritage
Written by Sean Carrington, Henry Fraser, John Gilmore and Addington Forde.
Available at Days Bookstore Barbados and

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