TESTING: Walker and Minister Dr. Chris Tufton try out one of the devices.
IF Lainsworth Walker has his way, Jamaica’s hospitals and medical centres would be equipped with the latest and most effective machines and other tools to save lives. That’s why for the second consecutive year, Walker and his team at Medical Link, a leading supplier and distributor of medical equipment in the region, have put on the Caribbean Medical Devices Exhibition (CME).
The two-day event brings together manufacturers from all over the world to display their newest offerings for the benefit of hospital administrators and other personnel. “We work with the hospitals, and we noticed a disconnect between the administrators and the clinical team. Members of the clinical team usually go overseas to attend conferences and seminars, where they are introduced to some of the best and latest equipment, but when they return home they don’t have those resources to work with, and it gets frustrating,” Walker tells TALLAWAH.
“So we figured why not put on a show here. Every year millions of dollars are spent on equipment, and then they work for like two months. So the idea is to put on the show and invite manufacturers to display equipment, so that administrators and doctors can come and see the equipment and test the equipment before purchase.”
This year’s exhibition (returning to the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel, March 14 and 15) features manufacturers from Czechoslovakia, Germany, Ireland, Denmark, the United States and China.
Klaus Kanje, sales manager at David Medical, one of the Chinese companies, says the exhibition has been good for business. “This is our second time participating because last year was a great success, and we decided that this is a useful way to promote our products,” says Kanje, whose company supplies paediatric equipment. “All of the incubators and infant radiant warmers at Spanish Town Hospital were bought from our company. Medical Link is our distributor here and they have a great team to work with.”
In addition to incubators and infant radiant warmers, patrons (including nurses, doctors, students, members of the public) learned about cardioholters and cardio cards (by Nasiff Associates), blood pressure and blood gas devices, radiometers and foot sanitizers (by Infinium).
Walker, Technical Director of the 16-year-old Medical Link, says the CME is already showing signs of growth. “Last year we had it for one day; this year it’s two days and we’ve doubled the number of registered persons. We have people from Bahamas, Turks & Caicos, Cayman and we also have some Cuban doctors,” Walker notes, adding that they’ve added seminars and workshops to the 2019 schedule, including a presentation on challenges in hospital administration.
Looking ahead, their goal is singular. “We want to see some of this equipment going into the hospitals,” says Walker, “so that healthcare can be better in Jamaica.”