Boarders relocation costs govt. $800,000 in the first year

Boarders relocation costs govt. $800,000 in the first year
Princess Margaret Hospital

NASSAU, BAHAMAS — The government’s initiative to relocate boarders from the Princess Margaret Hospital will cost $800,000 in the first year, said Social Services Minister Frankie Campbell yesterday.

During a press conference, Campbell advised that some 30 boarders will be moved to senior residential facilities in order to free up bed capacity at the hospital.

“The boarders are being relocated to various senior citizens’ homes all of which are not government-owned, that is where the chunk of the money is going,” he said.

“Those boarders are at an age where they call for additional constant care.

“We are going to ensure that those boarders while taken out of the hospital aren’t treated any less and not given any less attention than they would have been receiving at the Princess Margaret Hospital.”

Health officials have previously reported that two men will be re-located to the Persis Rodgers Home for the Aged; 26 are earmarked for transfer to Pat’s Senior Citizens Home; and two other boarders will “eventually” be transferred to the South Andros Group Home in South Andros.

Campbell yesterday defended the cost of the relocation exercise, saying that when the cost is compared to the near $6 million annually to house them at the hospital, the relocation cost is quite inexpensive.

He noted that what would be ideal, “is if the children and loved ones of those boarders would find it in their heart to pay back what I’m sure those boarders would have extended to them in formative years”.

Campbell said: “Without going into detail, I’m sure without fear of honest contradiction that a high percentage of those boarders have family members who I hope are listening to me now and I hope would be touched that they will go and find a way to work with us to either reduce the expense of those who have a greater means to take over the responsibility of caring for mommy and daddy and uncle who would have once cared for them.”

The boarders will be located once they complete the proper COVID-19 preparations and testing, prior to leaving the hospital, according to Director of Social Service Lillian Quant-Forbes.