NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Minister of Health Renward Wells yesterday provided an updated timeline for the phased redevelopment of Grand Bahama’s Rand Memorial Hospital, with major works expected to be completed within the next three months.
Wells also provided an update on renovations at Princess Margaret Hospital (PMH), which he said were on track to be completed next month to address overcrowding.
He provided a status report during a press conference to give an update on his ministry, and the COVID-19 fight.
“It is a well-known fact that proper infrastructure in a Health system improves effectiveness, safety, timeliness, patient- centeredness, access, and efficiency,” Wells said.
“Inadequacies in any health system infrastructure can limit access and contribute to poor quality of care and outcomes, particularly among vulnerable population groups.”
The Rand Memorial Hospital was severely damaged as Hurricane Dorian devastated the islands of Abaco and Grand Bahama nearly one year ago; and some $21 million has been allocated for its restoration.
The project is split into three parts that got underway on April 29, alongside work to repair main operating theatre and related departments.
Part A is budgeted at $628,397.00, and covers the main entrance, foyer, pharmacy, admissions and pediatrics.
Wells said this part is 80 percent complete and scheduled to end on September 29.
Part B is budgeted at $352,344.60 and is 65 percent completed.
It includes the Medical, Surgical, Step-Down, and Intensive Care Units; and; and is scheduled for completion in October 2020.
Part C is budgeted at $1,750,000.00; and is expected to be completed in November 2020.
It covers the East Wing, Public Corridor, the Healing Gardens and Chapel; and is 45 percent completed.
Restoration of the hospital’s main Operating Theatre Suites, Post Anesthesia Unit and Central Sterile Supplies Department is budgeted at $606,449.76.
Wells said this project began on January 13 and is currently 95 percent completed.
The Rand Memorial Hospital Restoration Program also includes: the Container Operating Theatre Suites; Post Anesthesia Unit (PACU); and Central Sterile Supplies Department (CSSD).
Wells noted these units were donated by Build Health International and a non-governmental organization known as Direct Relief.
This part of the project started on March 5, and is expected to be completed by the end of this month, he said.
The minister noted the Rand Memorial Hospital’s COVID-19 program is 98 percent completed.
It incorporates: the COVID-19 Infectious Disease Unit; the Infectious Disease Unit Cancer Association project;
and the completion of the Kitchen Cafeteria.
The new COVID-19 Infectious Disease Unit is being developed at a budgeted cost of $1,386,596.15, he said.
The Infectious Disease Unit Cancer Association project is budgeted at $ 244,897.79, and is 85 percent complete.
Wells said the project started in the first quarter of this year and is scheduled to end by September 25.
He furthered the Infectious Disease Unit is expected to be ready for occupancy by early September.
Wells said the Kitchen Cafeteria Completion project is 90 percent completed and is budgeted at $407,593.67.
“By the end of October 2020, renovations to Pediatrics, Pharmacy, Admissions, the Lobby, Doctor’s Offices, On-Call and Nurses’ Suite, the Morgue and the surrounding corridors and other works for each space are scheduled to be completed,” he said.
Wells said works to complete the “much-needed” ICU and Step-down Units; hospital HVAC duct upgrade and expansions; and repair eight air handling units of the existing main operating theatre will make progress by early September 2020.
Some $10 million has been allocated for the PMH renovations, which include the Emergency Department Urgent Care Phase A project; and the Agape Family Medical Clinic expansion.
The Urgent Care project features a new entrance; enhanced security; isolation room; wound care; and orthopedic departments.
PMH renovations also include the conversion of the old operating theatre suites into a 19 bed inpatient suite; Male Surgical I (15 Beds); and bathrooms in the old ICU, Legacy, and Outpatient Department.
“Enabling works and renovations to the Emergency Department are ongoing and the public will see some phases of this renovation being completed by the end of the year,” Wells said.
“Renovations for the relocation of the orthopedic and wound care departments are also ongoing.”
Wells said Phase II of the project is the Metal Roof Replacements program which should begin in October 2020.
“It is true, our focus has been COVID-19 and stopping the spread of the virus,” he added.
“However, the Government of The Bahamas remains committed to providing its citizens with quality and accessible healthcare.
“As work continues to progress the public will be updated with timelines and accessibility to all of our healthcare facilities.”