The health services in Mauritius are undergoing a complete overhaul with input from both the Government and the private sector. These efforts will no doubt improve the level of health care in Mauritius to meet the present and future needs of the people.
The Wellkin Hospital and the Dr. Agarwal's Eye Hospital have been set up and the government are revamping the range and quality of health services for all. New and expanded services are necessary to secure the levels of health and of health services in Mauritius that are enjoyed by people in developed countries.

Some of the proposed developments proposed include a 24-hour family doctor service, major expansion of high tech, diagnostic and treatment services, new and improved hospitals and health centers and a greater emphasis on health promotion and preven­tive medicine. The government is working towards the introduc­tion of an assets management approach for the health services estate, to renew and maintain buildings and equipment in full working order. It includes a better deal for staff as part of a human resources develop­ment plan, with thousands of extra jobs and a programme of continuing education and training. Quality assurance is to be extended to all facilities to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of services, and a Patient's Charter will be put in place to promote consumer protection.

High expectations
According to the Ministry of Health, the results expected from the plan include an increase in life expectancy to above 75 years, further reductions in infant and maternal deaths, as well as an increase in the number of life sav­ing heart operations, and in the capacity to reduce deaths from kidney failure through expansion of kidney dialysis and trans­plant services. Further improvements will be made in the quality of prevention and care for those with hypertension and diabetes to reduce the risk of complications from these conditions. Mental health ser­vices will be reformed. Health promotion will focus on improvements in lifestyle to reduce tobacco use and alcohol abuse, increase exercise and improve diet. "Programmes will also be strengthened to provide more support to the most disad­vantaged people whose health is affected by poverty, homelessness, disabilities and mal­nutrition," says a Ministry spokesperson.

New services
The cost of these developments is beyond what can be expected in the medi­um term from the normal budget sources. The replacement and renewal pro­gramme for all health sector buildings and their equipment includes Victoria Hospital at Candos, conversion of Mahebourg and Long Mountain hospitals, Poudre d'Or, ENT and parts of SSRN as well as the completion of the upgrading of Dr. Jeetoo hospital. New developments at Flacq (nursery, orthopaedics, cardiology and haemodialysis), Regional mental health units and community mental health services are underway, as well as a new hospital for the central regions (250 beds with teaching facilities); new specialised Accident and Emergency Departments for each region and for Rodrigues; health promotion and occu­pational health, teaching departments in clinical and other disciplines, Ayurvedic medicine and an intensive prevention programme against sexual­ly transmitted diseases and HIV/AIDS.

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