Castries, Saint Lucia, 21 March 2024.
Violence is rightly examined as a public health issue, because it affects physical, mental, and psychosocial health, it affects the individual families, andcommunities.

Violence plagues the Region and represents a huge burden on health systems and has major economic costs to society as a whole.

“It is for this reason that, “Violence in the Caribbean: a Public Health Crisis” has been chosen
as the theme for the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) Annual Health Research Conference this year.

Crime and violence threaten public safety, economies, and mental well-being and is no friend to anyone. It affects all levels of society. 

The conference will address this scourge inflicting harm across our entire Region. 

In partnership with the St. Lucia’s Ministry of Health, Wellness and Elderly Affairs, CARPHA will welcome researchers, medical, public health professionals, and those from related fields to participate. We encourage lively discussions and exploration of research, analyses, and proposed solutions to address this public health crisis,” stated Dr. Joy St. John, CARPHA Executive Director, speaking at the March 20th media launch for the conference.

CARPHA, in collaboration with the Government of Saint Lucia, through the Ministry of Health,
Wellness and Elderly Affairs will host the 68th Health Research Conference from 25-27 April 2024.

The three-day conference, which gives delegates a platform to network, share research and
insights, will take place at the Royalton Saint Lucia, Cap Estate, Gros- Islet.

The conference is the Caribbean’s premier gathering of health research professionals. More
than 150 participants will benefit from oral and poster presentations; and concurrent sessions.
Health researchers will be awarded at the Conference for their outstanding contributions to public
health in the Region.

In his opening remarks, Honourable Moses Jn Baptiste, Saint Lucia’s Minister of Health, Wellness
and Elderly Affairs said “This theme is both timely and relevant as the escalating levels of violence
and crime are of serious concern both locally and for the Region. This has been addressed in the
past as a developmental issue focusing on the balance between tough law enforcement, social
development, and crime prevention strategies. The effects on the health sector are of particular
concern to me as the Minister for Health, Wellness and Elderly Affairs. The effects range from the
increased physical injuries with loss of limbs and disabilities, to mental health disorders due to
psychological distress, anxiety and depression, especially in the communities most impacted. He
added “the public health approach which is proposed will assist in the identification of the
determinants or the causal factors, prevention strategies and facilitate the holistic approach
utilizing multiple agencies to address crime and violence.”

The Conference will be attended by Chief Medical Officers, researchers, law enforcement officers,
regional security officials, health and allied health professionals (physicians, nurses,
psychologists, environmental health officers) and other public health officials from across the
Caribbean Region, Latin America, North America, and Europe.

The Minister encouraged members of the Medical and Dental Association, Nurses Associations,
Pharmacy, Allied Health professionals and related disciplines to participate fully. He expressed
his gratitude for the opportunity to work with CARPHA in bringing this conference to Saint Lucia
and highlighted that the benefits of the conference will be far reaching long after the event is over.

He also encouraged the general public to participate in a town hall discussion themed: Violence
and the Youth, on Wednesday 24th April from 6:00pm. The venue is the Financial Administrative
Center, Point Seraphine, Castries.

Leading up to the conference, are the following

  • Town Hall Meeting
  • Monitoring and Evaluation Workshop
  • Meetings of the Caribbean Vector Borne Disease Network, and
  • Meeting of the CARICOM Chief Medical Officers
    More information about the conference, and special rates for residents, students, including
    sponsorship and exhibition opportunities, can be found at
    and on social media at CARPHA1.

More information about the conference, and special rates for residents, students, including
sponsorship and exhibition opportunities, can be found at
and on social media at CARPHA1.

Recording of Media Launch: