Dominica National Commission on CNCDs

by HCC
Dominica National Commission on CNCDs
Commission Profile
Status as at June 2019Inactive
NameDominica NCD Commission (DNCDC)
Date of establishment2008; active for 2 years followed by period of dormancy from 2010 to 2016. A new Commission was appointed in February 2016. Letters of invitation went out in June 2016
Date of first meetingJuly 2016
Date of last meetingSeptember 2016
Number of meetings over past 12 months3 (periodicity monthly to date: July, Aug, Sep)
Chairperson’s nameMs. Priscilla Prevost
TitleHealth Coordinator
Organisational affiliationEast Caribbean Conference of Seventh Day Adventists/Lifestyle Health Consultant
Duration of tenure2 years, to February 2018
Summary of steps taken to establish the CommissionThe Health Promotion Unit of the Ministry of Health (MoH) contacted individuals who would be able to contribute and be interested in the Commission; the names then were submitted to the Cabinet, which made the appointments. The MoH followed up to inform the members
  • Was there a planning group, (e.g. Task Force, Committee or other “precursor body”) that worked to establish the Commission?
  • If so, does the group still exist?
  • If it does, what is its relationship with the Commission?
No planning group
  • Are there recommended profiles or desired characteristics for Commission Chair and Commissioners?
  • Were these applied in selecting the Chair and Commissioners?
  • If yes, to what extent do the Chair and Commissioners satisfy them? Fully? To a large extent? To some extent?
The TOR do not provide characteristics for the Chair, but do stipulate a multisectoral nature of the Commission
Legal authority/referenceCommission is appointed by Cabinet and is supposed to report (according to the ToR) every 6 months to Cabinet through the Minister of Health; supported by the presence of a legal representative on the Commission
Location(sector/entity)Ministry of Health
Mandate/Scope of workAs set out in TOR
Terms of referenceYes; old TOR revised and to be submitted to the Minister of Health
Conflict of interest policyNo
Code of ethicsNo
Standard operating proceduresNo
NNCDC strategic plan/plan of actionNot yet, but plan to develop this. Presently reviewing the draft Ministry of Health NCD Policy and Plan which would inform the Commission’s own plan.
Decision-making process (consensus, majority, other)No, not as yet
Government sector membership and level of representationMinistry Education (Education Officer responsible for Health & Family Life Education); Ministry of Agriculture (Director of Agriculture); Ministry of Trade (Director of Trade); Ministry of Health (3 representatives: Health Promotion Coordinator – Mrs. James; CMO; Epidemiologist and Health Advisors to the Minister; Representative from Legal Affairs
Civil society membership and level of representationDominica Cancer Society; Dominica Diabetes Association; East Caribbean Conference of SDA Health Ministries (FBO)
Private sector membership and level of representationDominica Association of Industry and Commerce (umbrella organisation)
Ex officio members-
Secretariat exists? If so, please give date of establishmentNot as yet. The MoH Health Promotion Unit functions in this role for the time being
Full-time human resources/functionsNo paid staff
Part-time human resources/functionsNo paid staff
Main functions (advisory, accountability, strategic planning, project/programme implementation, other)Main roles in ToR, with primary focus on advisory role working closely with the Health Promotion Unit.
Main areas of interventions for NCDs and NCD risk factors3 priority areas identified – childhood obesity; nutrition; physical activity (with an emphasis on built environment i.e. space for physical activity). Also legislation regarding smoking – FCTC
Other health issues that the NCD/Wellness Commission addressesAdvocacy for effective management of NCDs
  • Is there integration – structural or functional, with other health-related Commissions, such as HIV Commissions?
  • If so, to what extent? Fully? To a large extent? To some extent?
Framework(s) of reference (national policy, strategy or plan; international plans/strategies)National NCD Policy in draft/ National NCD Strategic Plan – in draft?
Focus of interventions (legislation, taxation, policy development, project/programme development, project/programme implementation, capacity building, surveillance, monitoring and evaluation, otherLegislation regarding smoking – FCTC, smoke-free spaces, and advertising. Draft developed by Health Promotion Unit and approved by Cabinet; to be sent to Legal for drafting
Work groups/subcommittees/task forces and their functionsHave not discussed this as yet, and the group is small. However, one subcommittee for press launch of the Commission
Accountability mechanisms (periodicity of monitoring, evaluation, reporting, and to whom; financial accountability mechanisms)Commission reports directly to the Minister of Health, therefore has direct line of communication. Minutes of meetings prepared for each meeting and report made to the Minister 3 – 6 monthly
Main successesNot applicable – newly formed. However for Caribbean Wellness Day (CWD) jointly with the MOH had a church service to launch the CWD, held at the Seventh Day Adventist Church.
Success factorsNot applicable – newly formed
  • Were there any successes due mainly to the participation of non-health sectors in the Commission
  • If yes, please summarize, highlighting the role played by the non-health sector(s)
Not applicable – newly formed
Main challengesNot applicable – newly formed
How were these challenges overcome?Not applicable – newly formed
  • Did changes in administration disrupt the Commission’s functioning?
  • If yes, what were these changes and their effects?
  • If no, how was continuity of function maintained? What steps were taken?
Not applicable – newly formed
Partnerships, technical cooperation (TC) – summarize partners and relevant TC areasNot applicable – newly formed
Main source(s) of funding and approximate percentage of funding from each sourceMOH Health Promotion Budget for Commissioner stipends
Indicative annual budget (USD)To be developed. Stipend recommended as part of the TOR to cover meeting costs. Chair EC$300 (1) and members EC$150 (~11); funds would come from the Health Promotion Budget; recommendation will be approved
Resource mobilisation, main areasAt the last meeting discussed the issue of the taxes on the SSBs to go towards the activities of the Commission. Issue in DMA with taxes going into the Consolidated Fund, however, so exploring with Ministry of Finance mechanisms for retrieving the revenue
Mechanisms for sustainabilityNot explored yet
Additional information/commentsWould be interested in being connected with other Chairs across the region

The Dominica National Commission on NCDs met from 2008 – 2010 and has not since met, due to lack of a Chairperson. Although the Commission had a mandate and Terms of Reference from the Minister of Health, with Multisectoral membership including government, civil society and the private sector, the Commission had no strategic plan. In terms of funding, there was budgetary support and PAHO funding and technical support.

However, Dominica has experienced increased participation of civil society and the non-health government sectors in the celebration of Caribbean Wellness Day. Participants include Faith Based Organizations, financial institutions, insurance organizations, the private sector, alternate health organizations, non-health sectors, health NGOs, the Ministry of Education, Youth, Healthy Community, association of retired persons, academia, the music industry and health districts. Stakeholders are eager to partner with the MOH and implement and finance their plans. During the last 3 years the MOH has been a catalyst building the building of partnerships among stakeholders for NCDs, and encouraging stakeholders to collaborate. This strategy has proven successful, resulting in an entire month of ‘Caribbean Wellness Day’ activities over the past 4 years.

These successes have occurred despite inadequate financial resources for information, education and communication, late receipt of promotional material from CARICOM and insufficient buy-in from critical policy makers and senior technical officers in Health.

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