The Public Hospitals Authority (PHA) yesterday signed a $3.6 million contract for the first of two phases of the structural and clinical redevelopment of the Accident and Emergency (A&E) department at Princess Margaret Hospital (PMH).
Inline Project Company Ltd. was chosen to be the contractor for the project, which is expected to take about 40 weeks.
During the signing, Minister of Health Dr. Duane Sands said, “This phase of the project represents major capital works at the Princess Margaret Hospital and symbolizes a significant step in the right direction with respect to the sustainable redevelopment of the hospital and the improvement of urgent care and emergency care in The Bahamas.
“The hospital will be taking all necessary measures to improve the impact of any and all infrastructure works on patients and visitors to the Princess Margaret Hospital. The public is asked to pay attention to all public announcements with respect to the hospital and its services and co-operate with directions and instructions given during this time.”
He said the project will include work to the interior and exterior, building code required upgrades to building services, civil works, construction of a new ambulance bay and EMS area and construction of a new entry lobby and canopy.
The project was launched in 2018 as “a pioneering effort to reform and improve urgent care and emergency care” on New Providence, according to Sands.
“This effort is focused on a series of phased enhancements in infrastructure, systems, services, training and equipment at the Princess Margaret Hospital’s emergency department, the Elizabeth Estates Clinic and the South Beach Health Center,” the minister said.
“Health planners have engaged with engineers, architects, clinical professionals and other stakeholders to design not only infrastructure but to undertake a comprehensive approach to the development of aspects of health delivery.”
Sands noted that there will be “some inconveniences” as a result of the redevelopment.
“[B]ut certainly, we will be able to continue to provide seamless care at South Beach and Elizabeth Estates and at Accident and Emergency,” he said.
The two-phase expansion will include the renovation of the entrance and driveway adjacent to Elizabeth Avenue, the creation of a satellite ambulance base and the modernization of equipment in the ward.
Sands has said the expansion is expected to triple the number of examination rooms in A&E.
The first phase was originally expected to start in April with the completion date initially set for August 2018. In March, Sands said the second phase was slated to begin in August 2019 and be completed by April 2020.
However, yesterday he said he wouldn’t be able to give a timeline for the second phase.
“We had a timeline which anticipated phase two being offset by about, if I recall, eight months, but at this point, we will have to get back to you on when exactly phase two is expected to start and the actual cost.”
The minister said the budget for the second phase will be around $5 million to $7 million.