OECS Secretariat recognizes Dr. Paul Ricketts

Dr. Ricketts was Dominica’s National Epidemiologist for over 16 years

The OECS Secretariat has recognized the work of Dr. Paul Ricketts who served as Dominica’s National Epidemiologist for over 16 years.

Dr. Ricketts passed away on September 16, 2017, and was recognized during the OECS Council of Ministers of Health held in Martinique last week.

An award was presented to Health Minister, Dr. Kenneth Darroux, on the behalf of his family.

At a ceremony on Monday, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health, Davis Letang, said Dr. Ricketts was recognized for his “sterling contribution to health” and his work in Dominica and the wider region.

“Dr. Rickett’s work transcends not just the Dominican boundary, the OECS, the region, but his work was recognized internationally … by PAHO and a number of other health organizations,” he stated.

He added, “I recall at his farewell service, that the honorable minister (of health) indicated that our thank you to Dr. Ricketts has to be how well we live his dream, his dream to ensure that we had a fully integrated health information system for Dominica…”

Dr. Ricketts’ wife, Consultant Ophthalmologist, Dr. Hazel Shillingford-Ricketts, said her husband was “very passionate about developing a sustainable information system for health not only for Dominica but for the Caribbean and the Americas.”

“A system for data management,” she explained. “This system which encompassed all other areas which impact the health of our people…as a medical epidemiologist he relied on data to monitor national health status. This data also allowed for evidence-based management of health threats.”

She stated that the award also recognizes the staff and the Health Information Unit who has been of great assistance to Dr. Ricketts.

“We know his vision will transcend time, and inspire new generations to come to further what he started,” Dr. Shillingford-Rickets remarked.


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  1. grips
    November 15, 2017

    Well deserved recognition for Dr. Ricketts. But this man should get this while alive….he meant well …he had a passion for health information management…which could assist tremendously with research and prevention. RIP Paul Ricketts.

  2. November 14, 2017

    That is why we are called over seas , DOM- IN- THE- CAN, when are we gonna wake up to international standards?.

  3. OECS person
    November 14, 2017

    Dr. Ricketts truly epitomized a true professional. He indeed loved his country and more so the region. Through my interactions with him through our work I grew to respect and admire this man for his unwavering dedication to the advancement of the medical field in serving the region in the advancement of medical technology. As the national epidemiologist he not only skillfully navigated the situation in Dominica by monitoring, promptly reporting and analysing situations of patterns and causes of disease and injury including Zika and Chikungunya recently but bringing together the right persons at the right time regionally. There are many wheels currently in motion simply because this man worked hard and worked smart. A true statesman and a national hero who was taken before his time, I wish his family condolences and the comfort in knowing that he has inspired many in the region. Rest in Peace my friend.

  4. Francisco Etienne-Dods Telemaque
    November 14, 2017

    “An award was presented to Health Minister, Dr. Kenneth Darroux, on the behalf of his family.”
    A man served his country, he expired; the dead man has family is yet alive; in recognition of his services an award seems necessary. However, rather than in a setting the award was handed to his surviving relatives, they had to politicized it by giving the award to Kenneth Darroux on behalf of his family.

    That sounds stupid, it is stupid, and out of order, it just another show, any play in DLP circus!
    Is Kenneth more important than Hazel who is alive and well, and who is the wife of the departed?

    • Jessica Ricketts
      November 15, 2017

      The meeting was held in Martinique, that’s why Hon. Kenneth Darroux received it on our behalf. It was then presented to us at a separate ceremony here in Dominica. This is not political. Thanks for your concern.
      Thank you, DNO, for a perfect article. Short with the important highlights from the ceremony

      • Francisco Etienne-Dods Telemaque
        November 15, 2017

        Thanks for the clarification Jessica: I got hot under the color when I read the sentence in  the quote in my response. I wondered what happened to your family. I had no clue that the actual affair took place out of Dominica.

        Then again I do not want to be the devils advocate and say the appropriate thing they should have done was to invite Hazel to the meeting of the awards; in the event she could not travel, one of the good late doctor relatives should be invited to receive that award on behalf of his wife and immediate family.

        That is my humble opinion now; as I am one who deals with life differently to the average Dominican, anyway that is my concept of how it should be done!

        Have a nice day Jessica. 

      • Barbara Saunders
        November 18, 2017

        Thanks Jessica

        Truly the daughter of brilliant, quiet, humble Paul Ricketts. Thanks for asking that imbecile to get his facts straight in a very diplomatic way, before his parrot choir joins the fray and takes Dr. Ricketts’ award to the gutter of their kind of politics.

        Thanks for saving the day! congratulations posthumously to Dr. Ricketts and his family. He was more Dominican than some of those born here.

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