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IAEA and University of the West Indies Mona Agree to Collaborate on Training and Knowledge Management

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Kevin Allen, CEO of the University Hospital of the West Indies, and Luis Longoria, Director of the Division for Latin America and the Caribbean, exchange congratulations at the signing ceremony for the first Practical Arrangements agreement between the IAEA and the University of the West Indies. (Photo: D. Calma/IAEA)

A signing ceremony for the first Practical Arrangement between the University of the West Indies Mona and the IAEA was held at IAEA headquarters in Vienna on 31 May, in the presence of a delegation of Members of the Board of the University Hospital of West Indies (UHWI). The new agreement, signed by Professor McDonald Principal of UWI Mona on 24 May in Kingston, Jamaica, and by Luis Longoria, Director of the Division of Latin America and the Caribbean on 31 May, will underpin collaboration between the two organizations in the training of professionals in radiology, nuclear medicine, radiotherapy, medical radiation physics, the use of stable isotopes in nutrition, and radiation safety, among others. The agreement also supports collaboration for the creation of nuclear knowledge and information management programmes at the University of the West Indies.

The UHWI delegation conveyed a message from Professor McDonald, who expressed his delight in having helped to facilitate the arrangement, and his conviction that the partnership would become stronger as time passes. The signing ceremony for the agreement was attended by Dazhu Yang, Deputy Director General and Head of the Department of Technical Cooperation, and senior IAEA staff.

The UHWI Board Members, visiting IAEA headquarters from 28 May to 1 June, included CEO of UHWI Kevin Allen, Chief of Staff Carl Bruce, Head of Radiology Peter Johnson, and Senior Director of Operations & Facilities Fitzgerald Mitchell. The visit was designed to provide senior UHWI staff with an opportunity to learn about the IAEA’s work in human health and nutrition, radiation safety and information management. The delegation also toured the IAEA Library and laboratories, including those located in Seibersdorf.

The UHWI delegation toured the IAEA Library as part of their visit to IAEA headquarters. (Photo: S. Ihlau/IAEA)

In addition, the Board Members attended the opening and closure of the first coordination meeting of a new regional project on radiation medicine in the Caribbean[1]. Mr Allen noted that the IAEA has provided significant support to UHWI, specifically in the area of nuclear medicine. A national TC project[2] focused on reducing morbidity and early mortality from non-communicable diseases, including cancers and cardiovascular diseases, is supporting Jamaica in re-establishing the first public nuclear medicine service at UHWI in 15 years. Mr Bruce expressed UHWI’s commitment to continuing close work with the IAEA to ensure the sustainability of nuclear medicine, as well as radiation medicine in general.

Finally, the UHWI Board Members met with IAEA staff to discuss the upcoming 2020­–2021 technical cooperation programme cycle, and developed an action plan which will form the basis for future cooperation between the IAEA and the Hospital. 

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[1] RLA6081, ‘Strengthening Human Capacities of Caribbean Countries in Radiation Medicine’.

[2] JAM6012, ‘Re-Establishing Nuclear Medicine Capacity’.

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