Rand hospital to be gutted

Demolition of the Rand Memorial Hospital on Grand Bahama is expected to start on Monday, according to Minister of Health Dr. Duane Sands.

“When we say demolition, I’m not talking about tearing down the whole hospital,” Sands said outside Cabinet.

“We’re talking about the internal demolition of the damaged areas, contaminated areas.”

The hospital was significantly damaged by Hurricane Dorian in early September.

A recent report by Build Health International (BHI), which was completed on Friday, notes that 80 percent of the hospital was inundated with flood damage.

It also notes that rust and mold have started to develop in areas affected by flooding.

Yesterday, Sands said, “We have gutted the administrative area. The plan is to replace the flooring in the emergency room leading to the foyer and then we will gut the hallway and the adjoining wards including the intensive care unit and the wards leading into the recovery room and operating room.

“And then, those would be made good after we eliminate all of the mold. Now, that process will involve what we call sequentially cutting into the wall to determine the upper limit of mold involvement and then treating the area.

“Subsequently, after making the area good, replacing the electrical and HVAC system, then the next step is replacing the furnishing and equipment.

“We imagine that it will take about six months, and with the partners – Carnival and Direct Relief [and] University of Miami – we should get this done right as the Samaritan’s Purse engagement ends.”

Sands said renovations on the Rand must be sustainable “to carry us for 30 to 40 years”.

According to the BHI report, rehabilitation of the hospital will take at least six months and reconstruction will take more than two years.

Sands has noted that it will cost roughly $20 million to repair the Rand. 

However, he said that international partners will fund the majority of that cost.

The minister said the government is anticipated to spend less than $10 million on the repairs.

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Jasper Ward

Jasper Ward started at The Nassau Guardian in September 2018. Ward covers a wide range of national and social issues. Education: Goldsmiths, University of London, MA in Race, Media and Social Justice

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