THE SOON TO be constructed Acute Referral Hospital in Arnos Vale will likely provide major improvements for patients and health workers through the integration of a number of features at the new site.
Senior consulting engineer on the project, Cecil Harris was speaking on NBC Radio’s ‘Views on Issues’ programme on Sunday, May 15 where he shared details on the facilities that will be included at the new healthcare facility.
Harris noted that the designs incorporate a homeopathic approach to care, as “it’s not just a concrete block of a building. It was designed in a way to incorporate landscape sections to help with the wellbeing and recovery of the patients”.
The engineer said the building will contain an Accident and Emergency unit, as well as six major operating theatres and a Critical Care unit.
A Radiology unit has also been included in the plans for the Acute Referral Hospital.
The northern end of the decommissioned ET Joshua tarmac has been identified as the site for the Acute Referral Hospital, which will boast a capacity of 130 beds.
Harris said on Sunday that 11 of these beds will be part of a private ward at the new hospital.
“The hospital will also have isolation units so in case of a pandemic or a particular type of ailment that you’d want to contain the patient in an area, there are many isolation units. Each of the wards have their own isolation units; male and female,” the engineer said.
He added that the plans will also accommodate an intensive care unit, and orthopedic unit, as well as an outpatient ward.
“There’s a rehabilitation centre within the hospital so those especially who are coming off various types of surgeries can be physically rehabilitated through a gym and other types of rehab treatments,” Harris said.
In addition to the expected sections for pharmacy, and administrative offices, the Acute Referral Hospital will also have an education and training centre specifically for telemedicine purposes.
The senior consulting engineer explained that, “there are a number of offshore medical universities here and this modern facility is expected to be used by them”.
He added that the centre was designed with a number of conference rooms and would have “the relevant digital infrastructure so that training through telemedicine approach can be carried out”.
“There are staff facilities as well. These staff facilities include overnight facilities for staff, if they have to stay there overnight, during hurricanes, or other natural events, disaster events so that key members of staff will be able to sleep overnight in this particular facility,” Harris said.
A cafeteria, morgue, maintenance department and a small chapel will all be available at the Arnos Vale medical facility once construction is complete.
Harris said the hospital also has a designated heliport area so that patients from the Grenadines can be transported to receive care at the hospital.
Entry points to the new facility will be via the bridge from the Methodist Church and on the northern end at the Casson Gardens.
The engineer also noted that a road will circle the entire hospital so as to allow ambulances the ability to drive all the way around.
“There will be a carpark for 160 vehicles because one of the problems down at the Milton Cato is parking. So this has a carpark down at the northern end, the end closer to the river, for 160 cars, which will cater for staff and visitors as well,” Harris said.
Finance minister, Camillo Gonsalves recently announced a further injection of capital by the World Bank — funds that were negotiated as a result of the rising prices globally.
Gonsalves said construction on this new facility is likely to begin in January, 2023.