Health systems in Dominica
Dominica’s public spending on health was 4.2 per cent of GDP in 2011, equivalent to US$418 per capita. In the most recent survey, conducted between 1997 and 2009, there were 50 doctors, and 417 nurses and midwives per 100,000 people. Additionally, in the period 2007-12 all births were attended by qualified health staff and in 2012, 99 per cent of oneyear olds were immunised with one dose of measles. In 2010, 96 per cent of the country’s population was using an improved drinking water source, and 81 per cent had access to adequate sanitation facilities in 2005.
Health services within the country are made up of a network of 52 health centres and two district hospitals. The Princess Margaret Hospital is the national referral hospital and provides curative and rehabilitative as well as other complex medical services. There is a smaller hospital at Portsmouth and cottage hospitals at Marigot and Grand Bay. The Ministry of Health is responsible for the provision and financing of health care services. Its mission is to promote the well-being of all citizens of Dominica through the provision of preventive, curative and rehabilitative health care, compatible with acceptable standards of human dignity at a cost that is affordable and sustainable.
The Dominican Government is an active participant in the Eastern Caribbean Drug Service, which is a regional pooled procurement scheme for importing pharmaceuticals and medical supplies. This enables the country to maximise the value of health care services to its citizens through the advantage of collective bulk buying along with neighbouring countries. The pharmaceuticals industry in Dominica remains largely unregulated, except in regard to dangerous drugs.
The most recent act relating to mental health in Dominica is the Mental Health Act (1987). There are 19.5 mental health outpatient facilities per 100,000 people (2011).