Milestones – 2017-present
Dr. Edwards has initiated many training and educational enhancement opportunities as he recognizes his staff as a valuable asset. To this end, the staff has engaged in many learning opportunities, notably the Key Populations Preceptorship programme, STI and dermatology updates, Psycho-social workshops and staff development training. The addition of a Clinical Psychologist to the staff has seen great strides in creating a strong psycho-social structure and building capacity of mental health knowledge, skills and attitudes among the staff.
The MRFTT has been also re-positioned as a leader in providing educational outreach to local and regional partners as seen in the organization being approved in 2019 as a site for the University of Washington eDGH Online HIV course.
Notably, MRFTT started its newest role in being the parent site for the ECHO program which will see cooperative learning for health care workers from different treatment sites throughout Trinidad and Tobago, along with other countries including Bahamas, Barbados and St. Vincent.
A change to the physical environment and inclusion of peer support for clients via the Patient Advocate program have been additional initiatives all aimed at improving clients experiences at the MRFTT. Both have been met with good outcomes.
The MRFTT also now has bilingual (English/Spanish) staff and has also been making best use of the capacities of staff members promoting research, management, creativity, educational and many other skill sets including facilitation of a successful out-reach program.
The Covid19 Pandemic 2020 saw the MRFTT accepting the request to assist the country in its response by providing Covid19 testing on behalf of the Government of Trinidad and Tobago.
The MRFTT born in 1982 to provide research to the University of the West Indies, has seen many changes and in fact the only consistency the organization has had, is change. The future though unknown, looks bright for an organization that continues to hold its own in local, regional and international settings.
Dr. Edwards is well positioned to steer the organization to chart its own course, in much the way that it has seemed destined to do from its inception.