£2.8million hospital upgrade will reduce overseas medical trips

A £2.8million upgrade of St Helena’s hospital has been announced – and it will mean fewer people have to go overseas for medical care.

Members of Legislative Council were told on Monday, 30 March 2015, that the work would involve a new accident and emergency area and intensive care unit.

The contract has been awarded to Basil Read, the South African firm building the island’s airport.

A government statement said the hospital would also be fitted out with new equipment “of the highest international standards”.

It will include a medical diagnostic suite, including a CT scanner (used to create detailed pictures of the inside of a person’s body), a new operating theatre with sterilising department, and a new radiography suite, plus ultrasound equipment.

The director of health, David Jenkins, said: “This is a significant landmark for St Helena and for the health of the nation.

“This refurbishment will provide top of the range equipment in areas essential for St Helena and allow us to make more accurate clinical diagnoses and detect illnesses which we may previously not have had sight of.

“Some of the equipment, such as the CT Scanner, will allow us to provide better care to patients in St Helena and reduce the number of patients who need to go overseas.”

Refurbishment works will start in May 2015 and are expected to take around ten months to complete.

The Hon. Lawson Henry told fellow councillors: “This has been long in coming but has got to be good news for St Helena.”

 

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