History and Background of Ptolemy Reid

 

Services Provided and History & Background

The Ptolemy Reid Rehabilitation Centre (PRRC) is a not-for-profit organisation providing rehabilitation services for children with physical/developmental disabilities, amputees and persons with hearing impairment. PRRC provides the following:

  • Rehabilitation programme: physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech & language therapy
  • Special Education: Harold B. Davis Special School
  • Vocational Training for adolescents and young adults with disabilities
  • Daycare services for children with special needs
  • Dormitory/part-time residency for children with special needs
  • Audiology: hearing testing, hearing aid repair and earmould casting
  • Manufacture of orthotic devices and prosthetic limbs at PRRC’s National Orthotic & Prosthetic Appliance Workshop, the sole facility in Guyana capable of manufacturing these appliances

Although the PRRC relies heavily on the support of donors and friends to make these services possible, the bulk of its services are provided free of cost in its efforts to ensure that quality rehabilitation care is always within reach of those who need it.

History & Background

PRRC began as the Polio Rehabilitation Centre on January 19, 1967. It was established by the Ministry of Health initially as a unit of the Georgetown Public Hospital, created to provide rehabilitation therapy specifically for children affected by Guyana’s poliomyelitis epidemics of the early 1960s.

However, by the mid 1980s, the centre had transitioned to providing rehabilitation services for children with physical and developmental disabilities, mainly Cerebral Palsy. The Centre was also relocated from its original location at Charlotte & Oronoque Streets to its current location in Carmichael Street to assist in facilitating service expansion.

As the organisation developed, areas for further expansion and enhance became apparent. Thus in 1991, a request to have the Centre’s status changed to that of a non-governmental agency and de-linked from Ministry of Health was made and approval was given by the Cabinet in May 1992. It was felt that this status would provide the Centre greater access to material and financial resources.

The Centre’s new status was confirmed by the new administration and in November 1992 a Voluntary Management Committee was established under Mr. Harold B. Davis as Chairman, until legal status was acquired.

A Memorandum of Understanding was developed outlining the relationship between the government and PRRC, whereby PRRC would receive an annual subvention for recurrent expenditure whilst capital expenditure and financing of other further expansion would be provided by the Management Committee.

In the ensuing years, PRRC was able to diversify its services tremendously. Mostly notably was establishment of the National Orthotic & Prosthetic Appliance Workshop, in the year 1994. What had begun as a small unit manufacturing braces and splints for residents of the Centre, was now a state of the art building and highly trained staff responsible for manufacturing orthotic appliances and prosthetic limbs for the clients nationwide.

In 2004 PRRC was registered as the National Rehabilitation Complex, a not-for-profit company without share capital under the Companies Act, and a Board of Directors was put in place.

Expansion continued steadily over the next ten years. A daycare for special needs children was established in 2006 to assist parents. In 2014, the Centre’s school unit was relocated from its small upstairs quarters to a brand new ground floor, accessible school building, the Harold B. Davis Special School, in honour of the late Chairman of the Management Committee. A new building to house the Centre’s Vocational Training Unit was completed in July 2015, where adolescent and young adult students are taught a range of life skills.

The PRRC celebrated 50 years of service on January 19, 2017. The Centre welcomes all donors, volunteers & caregivers who wish to contribute