First cohort of 9-1-1 Emergency Dispatchers on Nevis receive international public safety certification

Premier of Nevis the Honourable Mark Brantley (r) presents APCO certificate to Emergency Dispatcher (Supervisor) Ms. Natacha Wyatt.
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Charlestown, Nevis – Thirteen individuals have successfully completed the NEVCOM Telecommunicator Training ahead of the implementation of the Nevis 9-1-1 Emergency Dispatch System.

Premier of Nevis the Honourable Mark Brantley (r) presents APCO certificate to Emergency Dispatcher (Supervisor) Ms. Natacha Wyatt.

The cohort of emergency dispatchers received their certificates for completing the Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials (APCO) training on May 31.

Minister of Health in the Nevis Island Administration (NIA) the Honourable Jahnel Nisbett said the dispatchers will play a critical role in the emergency dispatch system when it is rolled out on Nevis.

“I think often when we make these emergency calls and the ambulance is on the way, how do you help in the time it takes the ambulance to get there? This is what this team of individuals has been trained to do, provide you with that support.”

She also congratulated Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health Mrs. Shelissa Martin-Clarke, Deputy Fire Chief (Ag.) Mr. Timothy Martin, and Coordinator of NEVCOM Mr. Theon Drew for also passing the course and becoming certified emergency dispatchers.

Premier of Nevis the Honourable Mark Brantley, NIA Minister of Human Resources, delivered remarks at the closing ceremony and applauded the participants for taking a bold step towards a new career in a new field.

“I am truly pleased about this because this is truly an historic feat and I am really proud of you. What we’re experiencing today is a quantum leap forward to take us to a point where we can save lives. I’m pleased to say you have the complete support of the Nevis Island Administration.”

He acknowledged Prime Minister of St. Kitts and Nevis the Honourable Dr. Terrance Drew’s cooperation with the NIA, giving the necessary authorization to proceed with the use of 9-1-1 as the designated emergency number.

“Not only that, he indicated that this is intended to be a pilot project, and if it works then we think that the island of St. Kitts as well also benefit from what we are seeing here. So while we are talking about a roll-out of this program on the island of Nevis, I want you to know that you are pioneers for the entire Federation,” he said.

The Premier thanked the Four Seasons Homeowners Association and its president Mrs. Tracy Lunenberg for raising the funds needed to implement the training and purchase equipment.

Mrs. Lunenberg said Association members were willing to donate to the worthy cause due to their generosity, vision, and love of the people of Nevis. She too congratulated the new dispatchers on completing the training, adding that they are now embarking on a lifesaving vocation.

“We are sure that you will aid in communication and the deployment of critical resources, and more importantly, you will enhance the lives of your fellow citizens.”

The first phase of the training covered cardio-pulmonary resuscitation (CPR), automated external defibrillator (AED) and first aid. The second phase of the training focused on effective communication using the approved methods.

Mrs. Ann Highley-Gergel, Nurse Paramedic and APCO-certified EMS dispatcher served as one of the main facilitators for the course.

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