Free Health Screenings to the public to mark Diabetes and Chronic Lung Disease Awareness Month

Wednesday 6 November 2019:

November is Diabetes and Chronic Lung Disease Awareness month. To help educate the public on risk factors, how to manage the conditions and how to avoid developing them, Bermuda Hospitals Board (BHB) Diabetes, Respiratory, Endocrine and Metabolism (DREAM) Centre will be providing free health screenings to the public.

On Wednesday 13 November from 10am-1pm, the Centre’s accredited diabetes and asthma education staff will provide the service in the main lobby of the King Edward VII Memorial Hospital’s (KEMH) Acute Care Wing.

Blood sugar and blood pressure screenings provide important information on diabetes and hypertension. Lung function testing for smokers and former smokers over 40-years of age can help determine if Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) has developed or is developing.

Attendees at the free event will also have their waist measured and can take advantage of free foot assessments.

In addition to conducting the screenings, staff will take time to explain the results of the screenings and advise participants on the follow up they should do.

BHB and DREAM Centre staff are committed to helping the public take control of their health. This includes educating on how to prevent disease and where chronic conditions have developed, advising how best to manage them.

Adopting a healthy lifestyle is key to reducing your risk of developing a chronic condition. This includes regular exercise, sufficient sleep and eating healthily.

“We have programmes to help you manage your blood sugar through proper diet,” said DREAM Centre Manager Jane Hope. “Many people don’t realise what a healthy diet is. We can help and guide you step-by-step through the process. In this way you can put your entire family on the right path.”

“Don’t smoke. And if you do, quit,” said Asthma Nurse Educator Debbie Barboza. “The harmful effects of smoking can be devastating to your health and the health of those around you. Quitting improves your risk of developing many of these conditions.”

For more information on the free screenings and the DREAM Centre call 239-2027 or email For asthma and COPD related information email

DREAM Centre public screening flyer NOV2019

6 November 2019 Home Page, News

Bermuda Hospitals Board celebrates Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Tuesday 1 October 2019: Bermuda Hospitals Board (BHB) is celebrating Breast Cancer Awareness Month this October with an awareness campaign organised by the Mammography Department.

For the entire month the Acute Care Wing will be under a pink glow every evening. Join the Snapchat buzz every Friday with the Mammography Department filters.

BHB’s Mammography Department follows the guidelines of the American College of Radiology (ACR) which includes the age at which persons should have mammograms and the frequency with which they should be conducted. The guidelines stipulate the following:

  • Women aged 40 to 82 should get mammograms every year;
  • Screening should continue as long as a woman is in good health and is expected to live 10 more years or longer;
  • All women should be familiar with the known benefits, limitations and potential harms linked to breast cancer screening;
  • Women should know how their breasts normally look and feel and report any changes to a healthcare provider right away;
  • Women with a family history, genetic tendency or certain other factors, should in addition to a mammogram, be screened with MRI. (Very few women fall into this category);
  • Talk with a healthcare provider about your risk for breast cancer and the best screening plan for you.

Follow us on Facebook – for opportunities to win prizes from the BHB mammography team during October.

1 October 2019 Home Page, News

Bermuda Hospitals Board 2019 road traffic accident statistics

Friday 27 September 2019:  Bermuda Hospitals Board road traffic accident statistics for August 2019 are now available. There were 172 cases that required attention at our emergency facilities – 2 people required admission to ICU and 15 to general wards. Of those admitted, one was a minor (17 years old). No one was air-ambulanced overseas due to a road traffic accident. Twenty-four of those who attended Emergency, were tourists.

2019 Bermuda Hospitals Board Road Traffic Accident Statistics August

2018 Bermuda Hospitals Board Road Traffic Accident Statistics 1 January

2017 Bermuda Hospitals Board Road Traffic Accident Statistics 

2016 Bermuda Hospitals Board Road Traffic Accident Statistics 1 January


27 September 2019 Home Page, News

World Heart Day: BHB offers free CPR training

Thursday 26 September 2019: Bermuda Hospitals Board (BHB) is celebrating World Heart Day this year with quick cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) courses for the public. BHB is the only American Heart Association Authorized Training Center in Bermuda and each of the courses offered have been created by that organisation.

Hands-Only CPR

Designed to increase the likelihood of bystanders taking action if someone suffers a heart attack right in front of them, this method does not involve any mouth-to-mouth contact. Only hand contact is required.

“Research showed that people were uncomfortable giving mouth-to-mouth help to victims, even in instances where a person fell into difficulty right before them,” said BHB Clinical Nurse Educator Kelly Pitcher. “This technique was created to increase the numbers of people that would be able to help in such circumstances, thereby increasing the prospects for anyone who may have a heart attack.”

BHB will offer the Hands-Only CPR course for free. Training takes about 30 minutes and is done to music. Research by the American Heart Association shows that people are more likely to remember the compression rate to use when they are trained to use the beat of a familiar song.

Participants must be able to kneel on the floor.


Family & Friends CPR

Family & Friends CPR is for people who want to learn CPR but do not need CPR certification to meet a job requirement. The course is ideal for community groups, new parents, grandparents, babysitters, and others interested in learning how to save a life.

This course includes training in the Hands-Only CPR technique as well as mouth-to-mouth CPR to use on adults and children. Adult and child AED use, infant CPR and mild and severe airway block for adults, children and infants are also a part of this training.

BHB will provide free instruction for this course. The workbook and mouthpiece required will cost $5. Family & Friends CPR training is about 2 hours long.

Participants must be able to kneel on the floor.


Registering for the courses

Please note that neither course is appropriate for clinicians.

Hands-Only CPR will be offered on Friday 27 September from 8:30am – 3:30pm

Family & Friends CPR will be offered on Saturday 28 and Sunday 29 September.  Three sessions will be offered each day.

Session 1 Session 2 Session 3
8:30am-10:30am 11am-1pm 1:30pm-3:30pm

Call 239-1029 to register or email Please include the time and date you would like to attend.


Family and friends CPR training flyer 2019

Hands only CPR training flyer

26 September 2019 Home Page, News

BHB welcomes Storm

Thursday 19 September 2019: Maya Collice Julia-Lynn Morris was due on Tuesday 17 September but mother Collice Washington went into labour in the wee hours of Wednesday morning and Maya was born during Hurricane Humberto on Wednesday 18 September.  Maya, the first child of both mother Collice and father Paul Morris, was the only baby born in Bermuda during the hurricane.

“We’d like to thank the maternity ward staff and physicians for all their assistance with the birth of our daughter,” said Paul. “As first-time parents they made us very comfortable and exhibited professionalism in both the way they spoke and treated us. Even through our concerns they listened, advised and met our needs. Collice and I are truly grateful to them.

“They played an integral role in us having a healthy baby,” he added.

“We didn’t know the baby’s sex beforehand and actually thought we were going to have a boy,” said Collice.

“People kept telling us we were having a boy, using all the old wives tales saying because she was carrying the baby high, it was definitely a boy,” said Paul. “Although I thought it was a boy, all I ever wanted was to have a healthy baby so I was not just surprised, I was also very happy when our daughter arrived.”

“I was open for either sex, I thought it would be nice to have a daughter, but I have a lot of brothers so I thought a boy would be also be good,” said Collice.

At 7:10pm as the winds escalated outside and the streets were clear of traffic, Maya made her way into Bermuda.

“There’s nothing that really compares with that moment and the joyfulness of it,” said Collice.

She admitted that the birth also provided her a great sense of relief as she was worried that she would be giving birth on her birthday, September 20 – tomorrow.

The couple said they gave no thought to Humberto during the 12-hour labour and were completely focused on their baby.

“My friends are teasing me asking if we are going to name her Humbertina,” laughed Paul, “of course not, but we do plan to nickname her Storm”.

Maya (Storm) Morris weighed 8lbs 4oz and was 19 inches long when she was born at the King Edward VII Memorial Hospital at 7:10 on Wednesday 18 September 2019.

As a precautionary measure, eight expectant mothers (all in their ninth month) stayed in the Maternity Unit during the hurricane. None went into labour.  All returned home today.

19 September 2019 Home Page, News

Hurricane Emergency Kit Guide for Diabetes Patients

Monday 16 September 2019: Bermuda Hospitals Board today shares a ‘Hurricane Emergency Kit for Diabetes Patients’ guide from its DREAM (diabetes, respiratory, endocrine and metabolism) Centre team.

DREAM Centre dietitian, Jessika Quigley, comments: “Medical care and supplies are not always available immediately after a hurricane, and with some planning ahead diabetes patients can avoid having a diabetes-related health emergency.  Simple steps such as ensuring a sufficient supply of medication, having diabetes friendly snacks, extra batteries for a glucometer or insulin pump, and reusable gel packs to keep insulin cool can help someone with diabetes get through a storm safely.”

Click here for the guide – DREAM-Centre-Hurricane-Kit-for-Diabetics-Sept-2019 FINAL

16 September 2019 Home Page, News

2019 Scholarship Winners Announced

Tuesday 10 September 2019: Bermuda Hospitals Board (BHB) today announces the awarding of nine scholarships, worth $155,000, over one or more years. All the scholarships are administered by BHB, with funding for five from Bermuda Hospitals Board ($70,000), three from the Bermuda Hospitals Charitable Foundation ($45,000) and one from GlaxoSmithKlein Insurance Ltd, a Bermuda-based subsidiary of GlaxoSmithKline plc ($40,000).

Venetta Symonds, BHB President & CEO, comments: “Congratulations to all the scholarship winners. It is exciting to see the next generation of healthcare professionals working to complete their studies. Forty three years ago I was in their shoes – a successful BHB scholarship winner. I wish them all the best in their studies and look forward to seeing their careers blossom. Whether they focus on their speciality or go on into senior leadership, I wish them well. I would like to thank the BHCF and GlaxoSmithKlein for their on-going investment in Bermuda’s healthcare future, and to all the members of the BHB Scholarship Committee who administer and support the selection process.”

Scholarships funded by BHB:

Chantae Hollis has received a BHB Scholarship of $10,000 for up to one year.  Chantae is in her third year studying at John F. Kennedy School of Medicine in Curacao. Upon graduation in 2021, she is planning to do her residency in Psychiatry.

Latroya Darrell has received a BHB Scholarship in the amount of $15,000 for one year.  She is in her last year of attaining her MSc in Physiotherapy at Queen Mary University in Edinburgh.  She will graduate in spring 2020.

Shayla Gift has received a BHB Scholarship of $15,000 for one year with an option to renew for up to two more years.  She is at Sheffield Hallam University, in South Yorkshire UK in pursuit of a BSc in Adult Nursing. Shayla’s is looking to graduate in Spring 2022.

Tiontae Thomas-Clarke has received a BHB Scholarship of $15,000 for one year with an option to renew for one more year. Tiontae is studying at Hampton University. Upon graduation, she wants to pursue specialisation in Mental Health Nursing.

Milon Bourne-Outerbridge has received a BHB Scholarship of $15,000 for one year with an option to renew for up to two more years.  Milon is studying Adult Nursing at the University of Essex in the UK.

Scholarships funded by the Bermuda Hospitals Charitable Foundation (BHCF)

Annefa Burke has received a BHCF Scholarship of $15,000 for one year with the option to renew for up to two more years.  She is studying at St George’s – University of London – Nicosia Campus in Cyprus.  In Spring 2022 she will attain her BA of Medicine and BA of Surgery.

Ceola Wade has received a BHCF Scholarship of $15,000 for one year.  Ceola is at the University of Exeter – UK Medical School in the process of attaining her BSc in Medical Sciences (Health Research).  She will graduate in Spring 2020 and Ceola wants to go on to specialize in Emergency Medicine.

Xe’na Simons has received a BHCF Scholarship of $15,000 for one year with an option to renew for one more year. Xe’na is studying at Advent Health University in Orlando Florida. Upon graduation, Xe’na wants to specialize in Mental Health Nursing.

GlaxoSmithKlein Scholarship

Alesha Page has received the GlaxoSmithKline Scholarship of $20,000 for two years. Alesha is studying at the University of Medicine and Health Sciences in St Kitts.  She will attain her Doctor of Medicine in 2021.

10 September 2019 Home Page, News

BHB CEO Notifies of Early Retirement in 2020

Wednesday 4 September 2019: Bermuda Hospitals Board today announces that Mrs Venetta Symonds, President & CEO, will be taking early retirement in July 2020 on her 40th year anniversary with BHB.

Mrs Symonds has given 12 months’ notice to the Board of her decision, 6 months longer than the notice period required by her contract. She remains committed to BHB and will continue to support what is required from the hospitals for healthcare reform over the coming year.

Mrs Symonds comments: “This has been a difficult decision to make, but after over 40 years working at BHB, there is so much I still want to do in my life while I am healthy and able. My time off earlier this year showed me there is still so much I want to learn and develop that I have put off due to work commitments. I have been so fortunate to have the opportunity to lead one of the most caring and dedicated group of staff since I became CEO in 2012.  I am proud of all that has been achieved through multiple changes and transitions over the last seven years, and I look back over the decades and feel such gratitude too for all the progress I’ve been a part of and the wonderful people I have worked alongside. Even after I retire, I am sure I will still look for ways to support the hospitals and healthcare in Bermuda.”

Mr William Madeiros, BHB Chairman, adds: “We would like to thank Mrs Symonds for her four decades of service to Bermuda and her leadership as CEO over the last seven years. BHB has flourished under Mrs Symonds’ vision and direction. Quality has improved, there is a strong strategy in place driving exceptional care, a strong partnership and a healthy community, and BHB has become a more open, transparent and caring partner under her leadership. We are grateful she has given us a year to transition. The Board’s job is to now develop and implement a leadership transition process. The CEO is appointed by the Board and we will do what is necessary to ensure BHB moves from strength to strength. We will update the community on our process in the coming months.”

The Minister of Health, the Hon. Kim N. Wilson JP MP, says: “Mrs. Symonds has dedicated her entire professional career and personal passion to the Bermuda Hospitals Board. I am certain that everything she did was with the best interest of our country’s hospital and our people at the top of her mind and in her heart. I am grateful to Mrs. Symonds for the advance notice of her intended early retirement, and for her years of service and dedication. I wish her all the best as she enters an exciting new phase in her personal journey. Until then, we continue to stand united as we strive to make Bermuda healthier.”

4 September 2019 Home Page, News

Improved diabetes management for inpatients

14 August 2019: BHB is focusing on improving inpatient care for diabetic patients, after internal research showed that 33% of inpatients at KEMH have diabetes. Irrespective of the primary cause of their admission to hospital, patients with diabetes are known to have poorer outcomes and longer hospital stays because of their diabetes.

Dr Andrew Jamieson, Endocrinologist, leads BHB’s Diabetes, Respiratory, Endocrinology and Metabolism (DREAM) Centre, and is overseeing this new focus of care.

Dr Jamieson notes: “By optimizing blood sugar control in hospital, many studies have shown that one can improve quality of care for patients with wounds, infections, as well as heart disease and stroke. We are particularly keen to do our part in supporting the hospital’s new stroke service going into the future as, on average, 40% of patients with stroke have diabetes. We want to help people manage their diabetes, return to their homes sooner and improve their wellness and quality of life. Over the longer term this means people with diabetes experience fewer complications, and overall this helps reduce healthcare costs for individuals and the island as a whole.”

Dr Andrew Jamieson and RN Tammoi Simons

The intensive focus on inpatient care includes daily rounding of most patients with diabetes by Dr Jamieson with Diabetes Nurse Educator, Tammoi Simons. That translates to about 30 patients in the Acute Care Wing each day.

Ms Simons undertook the inpatient research on inpatients and focuses on patient education. She adds: “It is staggering to know how many people in hospital have diabetes. We can make a huge difference by reaching them while they are in our care. Our new daily rounding for diabetes gives us time to help patients understand their diagnosis and how to use their medications before they leave hospital. This reduces the chances that patients with diabetes are readmitted simply because they do not understand how to use insulin or other medications. We are also arranging up rapid response follow-up after their discharge with the DREAM Centre staff. ”

This new fast track system provides early support at the BHB’s DREAM Centre for patients who are discharged from the wards or from the Emergency Department.

Dr Jamieson explains: “If we can arrange appointments with the DREAM Centre we can help support an early discharge and give people the support they need to improve their lives. Patients who are diagnosed with diabetes in the Emergency Department or in hospital often require rapid transition to a comprehensive outpatient care once they are discharged from hospital. This is so that they can receive multi-disciplinary preventative care which is critical in preventing readmission, and controlling diabetes as well as avoiding complications in the first place.”

Dr. Jamieson is working on a new protocol for critically ill patients with diabetes and is working with Ms Simons to provide educational services for hospital staff, both nurses and physicians, who also manage patients with diabetes in the hospital.

14 August 2019 Home Page, News