Diamond hospital being upgraded to SMART facility
-maternity, COVID-19 sections still operational
The East Bank Demerara Regional Hospital is being retrofitted to be recognised as a SMART hospital, under a £38M United Kingdom Department for International Development (DFID) funded SMART Hospital Initiative across the Caribbean.
The facility, which is also known as the Diamond Diagnostic Centre, was scheduled to be overhauled in January 2019 with a deadline of May or June 2020; however, this has been pushed back to 2021.
“What do we mean by SMART hospital? We want to have better patient flow in the hospital. The hospitals tend to consume a lot of energy and we can utilise renewable energy to reduce the power footprint of our hospital,” Minister of Health, Hon. Dr. Frank Anthony told the DPI.
Solar energy and SMART appliances will also be utilised in the facility to further reduce the hospital’s carbon footprint.
Meanwhile, the first phase of renovations, which started on September 1, is set for completion by October 16.
Although repairs are being done, some services are still being offered at the facility.
“A lot of physical work is ongoing but while that is happening, a part of the hospital still remains operational and that includes the maternity section. Pregnant women can still come in to that section and be looked after,” Minister Anthony said.
The section of the hospital used to isolate COVID-19 patients also continues to be operational.
The Initiative, which is being conducted by the Ministry with oversight from the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) will see upgrades to four other facilities: the Leonora Cottage Hospital, the Mabaruma Regional Hospital, the Lethem Regional Hospital, and the Paramakatoi Health Centre.
Over GY$800 million will be used to upgrade the local facilities.