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Dec 17, 2013

K.H.M.H. sign contracts to spruce up the ICU and parking lot

Contracts were signed this morning between the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital and contractors for works to be undertaken at the national referral in the upcoming New Year. In the first instance, the K.H.M.H. will be renovating the Adult Intensive Care Unit and secondly, remedial work will be done on the parking lot. But there is a price to pay. The contracting companies are CEV Construction and Usher Construction. Duane Moody reports.

 

Duane Moody, Reporting

The two contracts signed today in the conference room at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital were for the long overdue renovation and rehabilitation of the Adult Intensive Care Unit and the parking lot of the health institution. For the ICU, the remodeling will see a change from a closed to an open form of service to allow better observation and monitoring by nurses.

 

Dr. Gary Longsworth, C.E.O., K.H.M.H.

Gary Longsworth

“Both of these have been long in the making. In the case of the parking lot, we have fielding complaints now for the last four plus years and it has gotten worse as the present surface has sunk—continues to sink and settle and when it rains more than half of the parking lot is unusable. So it is long overdue; it will improve; it will allow us also to monitor and control parking which is literally uncontrolled at this moment.  In the case of the adult intensive care unit, we have been working on this for the last two years at least and it started with consultation with the specialists and nurses who work in the present unit. And the need to upgrade the unit and modernize it in light of the improvements that we’ve been making in several areas of service.”

 

Over two hundred patients utilize the services of the ICU annually. And Chair of the Board of Governors of the K.H.M.H., Chandra Nisbet Cansino, says that the renovations will allow the institution to expand its ICU services; improving the environment for the patients and staff.

 

Chandra Nisbet Cansino

Chandra Nisbet Cansino, Chair, Board of Governors, K.H.M.H.

“The occupational rate is eighty to a hundred percent. It was a hundred percent when the crime rate was higher, but now that the crime rate is so much lower, we have little more space to accommodate perhaps elective surgeries.  In the ICU, there are two rooms that are fully equipped to be intensive care units. The rest of the rooms are, like what Doctor Longsworth said, are private rooms. So we are moving from six to eight beds, but we are moving from two ICU beds to eight ICU beds because the equipment that is used for the ICU unit is different—it is like a hospital in and of itself. Like I said, I don’t know how many of you all have seen it. So in the ICU right now, we have two places that are really ICU beds and then the rest are just private rooms. But with the renovation, we will have eight beds that are ICU beds that will have the facilities necessary with services needed to treat an intensively ill patient.”

 

Dr. Gary Longsworth

“The physicians are constantly upgrading their skills. The nurses that work in there; we have dedicated nurses for the ICU now. In years gone by, the nurses used to rotate in and out, but we’ve changed that system now so that we have dedicated nurses ninety percent of the time.”

 

Through financing from the Belize Bank Limited, the national referral hospital secured a loan of six hundred thousand dollars at an interest rate of eight percent and which is to be paid over eighteenth months. Several proposals were submitted and CEV Construction and Usher Construction were successful in their bid and will be paving the parking lot and refurbishing the ICU, respectively.

 

Carlos Perera

Carlos Perera, Finance Director, K.H.M.H.

“The value of the contract for Usher Construction is three hundred and eighty-four thousand seven hundred and sixty-three dollars and fifty cents for the ICU. And then for the CEV Construction that will be two hundred and fifty-six thousand dollars for the paving of the actual parking lot. Those will be the two values. Both contracts were vetted, tendered, put out of tender, and were basically submitted to the Contractor General with all the necessary documentation and so forth from that end. The source of financing will be between the institution K.H.M.H. and the Belize Bank.”

 

Both the parking lot and the ICU are expected to be completed by April of 2014. Duane Moody for News Five.

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