Government to start work on new Geriatric Hospital soon

Government expects to break ground soon for construction of a new Geriatric Hospital. This was revealed by Minister of Health The Most Honourable, Senator Dr Jerome Walcott during the Estimates debate in the House of Assembly on Wednesday.

Word about the proposed facility was made public by Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley during a tour of the Sagicor Estates at St George. She announced the multi-purpose hospital would be located at Waterford, within the environs of the National Botanical Gardens.

On Wednesday, the Minister of Health told the House consultation on the construction of the 408-bed geriatric facility was continuing. He added the master plan of the project being executed by Barbados Tourism Investment Inc. project on behalf of the Ministry of Health and Wellness, had already been approved by the Department of Planning and Development.

“The project is going to be implemented in phases, the first phase providing for 300 beds to accommodate existing services. Phase 2 will provide an additional 108 beds and will also facilitate for wellness and communication-based services, sub-acute and private hospital services.”

The Prime Minister had explained the decision for the move was to some extent related to the cost of about $5 500 for the provision of care at the Geriatric Hospital, as it currently stands, a plant believed to have been built in the 1900s.

She told the Sagicor gathering that the present plant had presented some difficulties to nursing staff, having to navigate the movement of the acute patients, among the more than 200 patient population at the hospital, hence the need for a purpose-built facility that addressed the acute needs of the elderly who “do not have the support system or the finances in order to support themselves”. (GC)

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