Dr. Kamaria De Castro Appointed Chief Medical Officer of Antigua And Barbuda

Dr. Kamaria De Castro

Health Ministry Congratulates Dr. Kamaria De Castro On Appointment As Chief Medical Officer In Antigua And Barbuda

The Ministry of Health, Wellness, Social Transformation and the Environment congratulates Dr. Kamaria De Castro on being appointed as Chief Medical Officer effective November 2nd, 2023.

Dr. De Castro, a woman of the soil, comes to the position with a wealth of knowledge in the medical field.

She graduated with top honours from the Faculty of Medical Sciences Ernesto Che Guevara, Superior Institute of Medical Sciences, Havana, Cuba in 2007 and subsequently completed the medical internship programme at the May Pen Hospital in Jamaica.

She returned to Antigua and Barbuda where she worked as a house officer at the Mount St John’s Medical Center (now the Sir Lester Bird Medical Center) from 2010-2011.

Dr. De Castro has a passion for primary health care services and in the interim, worked as a Medical Officer within the private sector.

By 2014, Dr De Castro joined the Ministry of Health as a Medical Officer at the inaugural evening clinic at the All Saints and Grays Farm Health Centers.

Dr. De Castro’s love for teaching lead her to become an adjunct faculty member at the American University of Antigua in the Introduction to Clinical Medicine Department.

She also served as Medical Director at the University Park Health Center.

Dr. De Castro pursued a doctoral degree in Internal Medicine at the University of the West Indies Mona campus which culminated in December 2018.

During her training, she took part in abstract writing workshops and coauthored a publication, the West Indian Medical Journal.

She spent an elective year at the University Hospital, Jamaica; Mount St John’s Medical Center; and the University Health Network, Toronto, Canada and upon her return home, her enthusiasm about public health and healthcare services offered under the umbrella of the Ministry of Health, Wellness and the Environment, caused her to renew her commitment to enhancing the patient experience and quality of care offered to a diverse population.

She worked as a consultant specialist in Internal Medicine in primary healthcare services at the polyclinics across Antigua and Barbuda.

Dr. De Castro is Antigua and Barbuda’s focal point for the HEARTS Initiative in the Americas of PAHO/WHO.

This initiative involves hypertension control in the primary care setting.

She has professional affiliations with several organizations to include serving as Vice President of the Sickle Cell Association of Antigua and Barbuda and the Medical Association of Antigua and Barbuda.

She is a member of the American College of Physicians (ACP) as well as the Medical Protection Society.







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  1. Nice to finally have an antiguan … she is one of many who specialised in mona. Did she get her public health or health related degree at Tulane or GeorgeWashngton University, cause everyone else who is chief medical officer has theirs.

  2. The Public Service Commission probably confused the C in C.M.O for consultant. This person is junior, real real junior and other doctors have more impressive track records and actually meet the criteria for C.M.O.
    Some have led the HEARTS, MINDS & SOULS programmes. But in this place we set people up to fail.

  3. I’m really to see that she stayed focused and is being given her flowers now instead of choosing another foreigner and pretending they are Antiguan.

    • After the flowers die, then what?
      There are at least 3 other ANTIGUANS WHO ARE MORE QUALIFIED and many who are FOCUSED and who applied. Where are their flowers? How were they not given a chance?
      Any way might be the minister can’t control them, he might be able to control her. So in essence, she might just be another Antiguan foreigner.

    • Fron the Sideline. Finally…..Something you and I can agree on. I think she is Robin Stone’s daughter. Robin was the most popular DJ on ZDK in the 70s. Congrats!!

  4. I really thought they would force that square peg into the round hole. She must be devastated after pushing her weight around in the ministry –

    • @drFace The face above is just as square and just as lacking in maturity
      What is really going on in this country, first dwayne george, now “wet-behind-the-ear” doctors at the helm?

  5. Well I hope she can change the attitudes of the staff at this hospital we have here, cuz it is REALLY NEEDED!!!

    • It’s sad that you don’t know what the scope of work of the CMO is. She has nothing to do with the Hospital. We have a board on charge there and a chief surgeon

      • Sidelines it’s even sadder that the PSC also does not know the scope of the cmo work. They don’t even know the criteria for choosing an application. They also need to address the issues of all health workers (hospital and Fiennes included)
        So many Health people got no recognition or reward for their work during covid. If breast friends can get awarded and the stellpan ppl so should they.
        Did this doctor help during covid, cause I recall she wanted to charge and arm and leg to a tourism entity for testing when the government was testing for free. Her experience is mostly private practice in my eyes.

    • Dr. Rhonda was more junior a doctor when she started as CMO.
      Dr DeCastro would not be my first choice but she has my support, until proven otherwise.

      • @drWho. Times have changed. Back then the cmo was one of a few. Now with all the twenty eleventeen doctors, and advanced educational opportunities, it is PSC’s/MsShepperd job to make sure Ministry by Ministry stay relevant. For instance, remember there was a chief education officer, now there is a directour and several offshoots. I think a change in the nomenclature is needed for health too. Just like WHO has director, director deputy and several assistant directors , someone needs to come up with a meaningful pyramid for Antigua with posts attracting a scale of salary that is commensurate with that of the levels of responsibility. At one time (in the 80’s), the cmo salary was woefully inadequate and no one wanted the job.

  6. How can a junior doctor be appointed Chief Medical Officer without meeting the criteria for such a position? Why was that person’s application even put in the midst for consideration?
    Very soon, we are going to see the further demise of our Healthcare system and the blame should be put squarely at the feet of the Minister of Health and the Permanent Secretary in the said ministry. Just because the politician, and possibly the PS, can go abroud for medical services doesn’t mean that they shouldn’t care about us.
    It is time we give Jack/Jean his/her jacket and stop this friend and company thing. There is no way that a square pig will ever fit in a round hole, regardless of how one tries to force it in. Why is this lady allowing them to do her this injustice? Didn’t people like Dr. Zachariah, among other qualified doctors, apply for the position?
    Come on man, let’s begin to do things right and put competent, qualified, experienced people in positions if we really want to make our country a powerhouse among nations.

    • Is drZachariah from Antigua? According to Weston, she has a sing-song accent. But she is definitely worth her salt and she nuh fraid Molwyn or de PS!

      • What singsong accent has to do with if you get a position @without fear? Yes Zachariah is Antiguan and Weston dam farward! If it wasn’t for her and her international reach in 2013, my family member would still be languishing here in Antigua. At least she use her accent & her networking to help Antigua people (unlike others who look out for only themselves). The current government also saved the millions that they were paying America Hospital Management.

  7. This is a humble hard working Antiguan woman. I can remember you a young lady going to Antigua Girls high school, then onto State college. excelling in the sciences. You kept your head high while those around you crumbled. I can remember the hardship and difficulties you had financially and you persevered. Then onto state college and university.
    I know that you have reminded humble as when you were growing up. I am so happy and proud of you. May God bless and guide you as he did king Solomon.
    We have a comptroller of customs that came here way from India. We just brought Ricky Skerrit back to manage our sporting facility. We have given away all our lands to foreigners.
    Just stay humble- Gren-Gren is proud of you. You not from Crosbies or from aristocrat family.
    Stay humble and focus. We the sons and daughters or the poor pickney head Antiguans have your back. May God be your guide. Blessings!

  8. No big name muma and pupa- a the mud she come from. Her brother was the goalkeeper for Empire and Antigua. Mud people are proud of you . The strength of Shorty , ViV, KS , Empire, Halcyon steel , PM Humble Spencer and all the proud Antiguans and getto people be your guide. ViV is the only none grays farm person mentioned, but from next door Ovals he had the influence and grit growing up and playing with the guys from the mud. Go girl go . You deserve this and again stay humble and may God be your guide.

  9. Who God bless no man can curse. He appoints and it is his to put up and take down. He is the equalizer by giving brains in poor people pickney. Stand proud like king Courts . Stand proud and humble.

  10. Relevance? Frankly Speaking , so many doctors come from very very humble beginnings. Even some who come from a generation of lawyers doctors educators, sacrifice in some way be it emotionally or financially. I congratulate any one though who went to UWI, cause a medical school based on the English system, only has one objective: torture!

  11. Frankly speaking makes this decision sound like a case of affirmative action. I am very sure several doctors (male and female) come from humble beginnings, many who struggled, many who are sensible. That is why Frankly Speaking must know more and speak less.

    The CMO position has a published criterion:
    1) Ten years of Public Health experience. This includes working with the kinds of issues that CBH (also known as the Department of Public Health) deals with. Who was the doctor involved with the bendals quarry issue? Who was the doctor involved with the Perry Bay squatter issue? Who was the doctor who helped with evacuees? Who were the doctors who helped the government to stimulate economic recovery DURING’-A-PANDEMIC?
    2) A masters degree in public health or health management.
    3) Communications skills on paper and verbally.
    4) Familiarity working with the sanitary bureaus regionally & internationally. Familiarity with working locally wih ALL the “HIV TB Cholera H1N1 Dengue Infant-care Elder-care Epidemiology DomesticViolence NCDs Immunization” programmes

    So yes, the bio sent out by the Ministry of Health for the young doctor of the soil is note-worthy but the author of the bio (as well as the average reader/storymonger) do not realize that the bio of a cmo would look a little different.

  12. Thank you for the clarity Behind the Scenes; your post is right on point. As Calypso Boldface was known to say, “When you nah know, you nah know”.

    On another note, this to Frankly Speaking: Laurel Merchant, Dr. Zachariah’s mother, is from Cedar Grove and her father was one of the High Street Zachariahs. So she, too, is from humble beginnings.

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