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Jun 14, 2017

New Clinic in Double Head Cabbage to Serve Belize River Valley

Beyond the Horizon keeps on giving – today they handed over a brand new health clinic in Double Head Cabbage to the Ministry of Health. Measuring 2100 square foot, the building is the largest completed during the Beyond the Horizon exercise. The eleven room structure is able to accommodate up to forty people in its waiting room and has three private consultation rooms, as well as pharmacy space. News Five’s Andrea Polanco was at today’s opening and has this report.


Andrea Polanco, Reporting

For over ten years this small wooden building served as the health centre here in Double Head Cabbage. It also serves the communities of St Paul’s Bank, Willows Bank, Rancho Dolores, Bermudian Landing, Isabella Bank, Lemonal and Scotland Half-moon, and at times Flowers Bank. But this building has seen better years.


Javier Zuniga

Dr. Javier Zuniga, Regional Health Manager, Central Health

“That building as you can see is a wooden building and unfortunately over the years it has become infested by termites and it is in a dilapidated condition.”


And with a growing demand for health care in this area – where by the clinic would serve over two hundred patients per month – the Ministry of Health endeavored to get a new facility. And so nurses and patients who use this centre will no longer have to endure the cramped space and deteriorating building. Today, they officially received this brand new health clinic under the Beyond Horizon Project.


Bernadette Smith Gordon

Bernadette Smith Gordon, Rural Health Nurse, Double Head Cabbage

“Being behind here so long, I would like to say that it means a lot to these people knowing that they have a health facility like this to come and use it appropriately. They don’t have to go, as the skit says, they don’t have to go to Belize City and wake up early to go and get a number. They have their very own clinic.”


Dr. Javier Zuniga

“This is a blessing for the community. It will not only serve Double Head Cabbage, but it will serve the other eight other villages in the surrounding areas – total population of approximately two thousand five hundred people. The idea now is to get this facility up to par of where we want it to be in terms of providing health services to these communities. Now, we have a nice facility but now it is our responsibility to staff this facility and get the necessary resources that we need to provide those services to this community.”


Out of this clinic, patients in the Belize River Valley will be able to access primary health care. Here, family and community health services are provided daily.


Bernadette Smith Gordon

“I do from outpatient , pre-natal care, child health, everything that could be happening in one of the health centers is happening right here in this area; only those I can’t see or reach – if I don’t have the capacity to reach that person I would be sending them to K.H.M.H.”


Dr. Javier Zuniga

“This falls into a plan that we have for Central Health Region in terms of strengthening primary health care. So, our idea then is to have people – or we are trying to create wellness so that people, even though they are not ill can come into a facility and get checked. You know they have chronic conditions that are plaguing our country, our communities, our people; so the idea is to detect these conditions early before people then get complicated because we don’t want them to end up at Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital, that is a secondary, tertiary care andit becomes more expensive for the Government.”


Three months ago officers through the U.S. Army South worked on rotation to complete this clinic. From construction to electrical and plumbing, they made sure the eleven-room building was ready with storage room, staff lounge and consultation rooms.


Staff Sergeant Juan Cruz, Project Manager

“The building is forty-six by twenty-one. We started from scratch, we made the foundation, the slab, all the work, the roof. We installed the electrical, the plumbing. Everything that was involved in the construction project.”


Juan Cruz

Andrea Polanco

“How many rooms are in this particular clinic?”


Staff Sergeant Juan Cruz

“We have three consultation room; one triage; one asthma bay; one staff lounge; and two bathrooms for the people who visit the clinic.”


A mobile clinic also provides additional health care services to the communities. Reporting for News Five, I’m Andrea Polanco.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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