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Chapter 32:01 - Ministry of Health

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L.R.O. 1/2012
6 of 2005
Current Authorised Pages
by L.R.O.
1 – 14
... 1/2012

2 Cap. 32:01 Ministry of Health
L.R.O. 1/2012
Subsidiary Legislation
Medical Research Involving Human Subjects Regulations
(Reg. 9/2008)

Ministry of Health Cap. 32:01 3
L.R.O. 1/2012 L.
1. Short title.
2. Interpretation.
3. Ministry continued.
4. Functions of Minister.
5. Delegation.
6. Permanent Secretary, Chief Medical Officer.
7. Protection from liability.
8. Grants and financial arrangements.
9. Advisory bodies.
10. Annual report.
11. Regulations.
6 of 2005 An Act to continue the Ministry with responsibility for
Health and for matters connected therewith.
WHEREAS the protection and promotion of the health of
the people of Guyana is a responsibility of the Government
and of each individual;
WHEREAS the goal of the health and social services system
of Guyana is to contribute to improvement in the quality of
life and thereby add to the opportunity for the people of
Guyana to live a productive life, free from disease and
infirmity, and characterised by physical, mental and social
WHEREAS health needs and the goals of programmes to
meet them must be derived from a population based on
4 Cap. 32:01 Ministry of Health
L.R.O. 1/2012
analysis, and health care resources must be targeted to
groups of people with defined needs to achieve programme
WHEREAS national priorities must emphasise the
promotion and primary care components of health
programmes, with concurrent attention given to their
secondary and tertiary counterparts;
WHEREAS the Ministry of Health is to deliver and when
necessary oversee the delivery of health care throughout
Guyana and to effect plans and policies, monitor quality
and evaluate outcomes.
[1ST DECEMBER, 2005]
Short title.
1. This Act may be cited as the Ministry of Health Act.
2. In this Act –
“Chief Medical Officer” means the Chief Medical Officer of
the Ministry of Health;
“health facility” means a place in which one or more members
of the public, receive health services and includes a
health care centre, a health post, a training institution
for health professionals, a laboratory, a diagnostic
or therapeutic clinic, a nursing home, a place where
chronic or extended care services are offered, a
hospice, a place where rehabilitation health services
are provided, a medical or surgical clinic, an
emergency care centre, or any other place that is

Ministry of Health Cap. 32:01 5
L.R.O. 1/2012 L.


Functions of
“health care professionals” means all current health
professionals and any other that may be established
from time to time regulated by their own peer, body
or agency;
“Minister” means the Minister of Health;
“Ministry” means the Ministry of Health;
“National Health Plan” means the National Health Plan, as it
exists from time to time;
“Permanent Secretary” means the Permanent Secretary
appointed for the Ministry;
“prescribed” means prescribed by the regulations, unless
the context otherwise requires;
"regulations" means regulations made under this Act.
3. The department of the public service known as the
Ministry of Health is continued.
4. Subject to the generality of the list of duties
assigned and Gazetted, the Minister shall discharge the
following functions –
(a) oversee the delivery of health care services
throughout Guyana and promote the
physical and mental well-being of its people;
(b) advise the government in respect of the
health of the people;
(c) establish policies and principles necessary
to ensure optimal health for the people;

6 Cap. 32:01 Ministry of Health
L.R.O. 1/2012
(d) ensure that health services are developed
and that they are delivered in a
comprehensive, consistent, balanced and
equitable manner within the financial
resources allocated to the Ministry;
(e) develop and ensure the implementation of
the National Health Plan and other action
plans and directives, including human and
all other resource requirements necessary
for assessing, monitoring and implementing
such policies and plans, founded on
population based needs for health care
programmes, services and facilities;
(f) initiate, promote, conduct and maintain
surveys, research programmes and
planning studies into any matter relating to
health needs of the people as are necessary
or advisable;
(g) obtain information from the Medical
Information Systems and statistics for the
purposes of the Ministry and disseminate
such information within an effective
communication network in such manner so
as not to disclose the personal information
of any person;
(h) expand and strengthen information,
education and communication on health
(i) encourage and promote technical
cooperation with international
organisations, the private sector and other
non-governmental organizations;
Ministry of Health Cap. 32:01 7
L.R.O. 1/2012
(j) develop national standards of care and
practice, and provide for planning processes
for the development of health care services,
including enhanced community
(k) establish rules for the development of
budgets and for the periodic reporting of
fiscal and operational performance as part of
a health care financing section within the
(l) where regional health authorities are
established, enter into service agreement
with the authorities and review and approve
their health plans;
(m) approve, after consultation with existing
regional health authorities and funding
sources global operating budgets and capital
budgets of the regional health authorities;
(n) establish guidelines for special programmes
to be carried out by regional health
(o) facilitate the regulation of the health
care professionals in a consistent and
coordinated manner in the public interest,
that appropriate standards of practice are
developed and maintained, that individuals
have access to services provided by health
care professionals of their choice and that
they are treated with sensitivity and respect
in their dealings with health care
professionals and the councils and bodies
that regulate them;
8 Cap. 32:01 Ministry of Health
L.R.O. 1/2012
(p) facilitate the regulation of hospitals and
other health facilities in the public and
private sectors;
(q) enter into agreements for the
accreditation of health care professionals,
hospitals and health facilities to ensure the
highest standards of ethical behaviour,
medical research and health care;
(r) facilitate the continuous assessment and
monitoring of the performance and
compliance through their respective
regulatory bodies, wherever they exist, of
regional health authorities, hospitals, health
facilities and health care professionals in
the delivery of health care, treatment and
services relative to the National Health Plan
and other plans and directives;
(s) facilitate the assessment and monitoring of
the financial performance and value for
money of regional health authorities,
hospitals, health facilities and health care
professionals considerations, where public
funds are involved;
(t) enter into agreements for facilitating the
delivery of health care;
(u) enter into agreements to enhance the
promotion of good health, disease
prevention and the coordination of primary,
secondary and tertiary care components of
programmes and government wide health
policies and plans at the community,
regional, national level and international
Ministry of Health Cap. 32:01 9
L.R.O. 1/2012 L.


Secretary, Chief

level in accordance with the National Health
(v) promote programmes for training and
education; and
(w) any other matter relevant to the protection
of the health of the people.
5. (1) The Minister shall preside over and have
charge of the Ministry and all its functions.
(2) The Minister is responsible for the
administration of this Act.
(3) Where, under this Act, or the regulations or any
other law, power to make an agreement, or to give an order to
take any action, is granted to or vested in the Minister, he
may, in writing, delegate that power to the Permanent
Secretary, Chief Medical Officer, or to any officer or officers of
the Ministry subject to such limitations, conditions and
requirements as the Minister may set out in the delegation.
(4) Any agreement or order made, or action taken,
by a person empowered to do so under subsection (3) has the
same effect as if made and signed or taken by the Minister.
6. (1) The Permanent Secretary shall discharge such
functions specified in the letter of appointment and such
other functions as are assigned to the Permanent Secretary by
the Minister.
(2) A Chief Medical Officer shall be appointed and
shall be a public service officer.
(3) No person is qualified to be Chief Medical
Officer unless he is a registered medical practitioner of at least
10 Cap. 32:01 Ministry of Health
L.R.O. 1/2012
Protection from

five years standing and possesses the qualifications required
of the Chief Medical Officer.
(4) The Chief Medical Officer shall –
(a) keep himself informed in respect of
matters related to health issues;
(b) monitor the health of the people and
provide the Ministry of Health with
information and analyses on health
(c) advise the Minister on health issues
and on the need for policies and
practices respecting those issues;
(d) interface with public health
institutions outside of Guyana;
(e) in addition to the duties set out in
paragraphs (a) to (d), perform such
other duties and functions as are
assigned to him by the Minister, or as
may be prescribed under this Act or
the regulations or any other law;
(f) report in writing on matters referred
to in paragraphs (b) and (c), in such
manner as may be prescribed, to the
7. (1) No action or other proceeding for damages shall
be instituted against the Permanent Secretary, Chief Medical
Officer, or any officer or employee of the Ministry or anyone
acting under the authority of the Minister, the Permanent
Secretary or the Chief Medical Officer for any act done or
Ministry of Health Cap. 32:01 11
L.R.O. 1/2012

Grants and



omission made in good faith in the execution or intended
execution of the person’s duty or for any alleged neglect or
default in the execution in good faith of the person’s duty.
8. The Government through the Minister may make
grants or other financial arrangements for the enhancement of
health care to such persons and organisations and on such
terms and conditions as may be determined.
9. The Minister may appoint such person or persons
to perform such advisory functions as are considered
necessary to assist the Minister in the discharge of the
Minister's functions and such person or persons may, in
addition to advising the Minister, discharge such functions as
approved by the Minister, subject to such limitations,
conditions and requirements as the Minister may approve.
10. The Minister, after the end of each year shall
prepare an annual report and submit it to the National
Assembly if the assembly is sitting; if not, within fifteen days
of the commencement of the next sitting.
11. The Minister may make regulations –
(a) to give effect, if necessary, to the functions
and powers set out in section 4; and
(b) prescribing anything required by this Act to
be prescribed.

12 Cap. 32:01 Ministry of Health
L.R.O. 1/2012
made under sections 4 (c),(w) and 11


Regulation of
human subject
1. These Regulations may be cited as the Medical
Research Involving Human Subjects Regulations.
2. In these Regulations –
“Act “ means the Ministry of Health Act;
“Committee” means the Committee established by the
Minister to oversee the compliance with these
“ethical principles” means the principles and policies
governing medical research involving human
subjects, laid down and implemented by the
3. Any person engaged in medical research involving
human subjects shall –
(a) be responsible for protecting the
rights and welfare of all human
subjects involved in that research
which they sponsor or conduct;
(b) encourage and promote a research
atmosphere that safeguards the rights
and welfare of human subjects;
Ministry of Health Cap. 32:01 13
L.R.O. 1/2012
Powers of the
(c) respect the generally accepted
scientific standards with respect to the
safeguard, health and integrity of
human subjects.
involved in research which they
sponsor or conduct, proper
consideration be given to –
(i) the risk to the subjects;
(ii) the anticipated benefits to the
human subjects and others;
(iii) the importance of the
knowledge that may
reasonably be expected to
result from the research;
(iv) a consent process;
(v) special safeguards, whenever
appropriate for protecting
human subjects such as
children, prisoners, pregnant
women, refugees, mentally
challenged persons, rural
populations and economically
or educationally disadvantaged
persons who may be vulnerable
to coercion or undue influence;
(vi) an appropriate administration
overview to ensure that the
principles referred to in
paragraphs (i) to (v) are applied
4. The Minister may –
(a) lay down and implement the ethical
Medical Research Involving Human Subjects Regulations
(d) ensure that before human subjects are
14 Cap. 32:01 Ministry of Health
Reports by the

(b) establish the Committee;
(c) appoint the Chief Medical Officer or
other senior medical officer as the
chairperson of the Committee;
(d) prescribe the terms of reference of the
Committee so as to enable it to
discharge the functions in conformity
with the written laws;
(e) ensure participation in the Committee
of the private sector, civic society and
any other person or body of persons
concerned or affected by the
implementation of these regulations.
5. (1) the Committee shall submit a report to the
Minister regarding its activities for each year within thirty
days after the end of each calendar year.
(2) The Committee shall be answerable and
accountable to the Minster and shall submit to the Minister
any interim report or explanation or statement on any matter
as required of it.
L.R.O. 1/2012
Medical Research Involving Human Subjects Regulations