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Sep 17, 2021

A Field Hospital for COVID Patients in Garden City

A state-of-the-art mobile medical unit has been made available for COVID patients who require hospitalization and are coming from Cayo, Stann Creek and Toledo districts. The field hospital which was donated to the Government of Belize by the United States Embassy is presently located in Belmopan on the University of Belize campus. The facility has the capability to accommodate surgical procedures and is equipped with forty beds, generators and air conditioning units. News Five’s Isani Cayetano reports.


Isani Cayetano, Reporting

A temporary hospital for use in treating persons afflicted with COVID-19 was handed over to the Ministry of Health & Wellness earlier today.  A designated team of doctors and nurses will attend at the facility.  Inside the UB gymnasium, a network of tent-like shelters has been put together by personnel from the United States Southern Command.


Leyla Moses-Ones

Leyla Moses-Ones, Chargé d’affaires, U.S. Embassy

“Once again, the United States is putting into action our enduring pledge to stand together with our partner Belize with the continuing promise of solidarity in the fight against COVID-19 and any other natural disaster that may come this way.  Specifically, we are working in three different areas to prevent, mitigate and care on this pandemic battlefield.  In close collaboration with the diligent members of Belize’s medical community who recognized and planned for the long-term pressures that the pandemic would place on Belize’s healthcare system, our U.S. Embassy team and U.S. Southern Command worked to secure the donation of this one point one million dollar field hospital.”


Staffing the mobile medical unit will be a complement of healthcare professionals from the Cuban Medical Brigade, as well as a team of Belizean doctors and nurses.  On hand to receive the donation was Minister of Health & Wellness Michel Chebat.


Michel Chebat

Michel Chebat, Minister of Health & Wellness

“Initially it’s gonna be housed here and we’re going to be using it to attend to our patients coming from the south and the west who have moderate symptoms of COVID and who do not need referral to Karl Heusner [Memorial Hospital].  So it’s going to be housed here until the need changes. We have forty doctors and nurses arriving from Cuba, some arrived on Wednesday.  We have the other portion arriving today and they, together with a complement of Belizean doctors and nurses will be attending this hospital.”


The field hospital which is being inherited for civilian use comes in anticipation of a spike in hospitalizations, amid a deadly third wave of COVID infections.


Leyla Moses-Ones

“If you stay ready then you don’t have to get ready and really this is about readiness and preparedness more than anything else.”


Kevin Bostic

Across the region, similar donations have been made by the United States Southern Command in the fight against COVID-19.


Kevin Bostic, U.S. Southern Command

“This is, if I’m not mistaken, we have across Central and South America, AOR, I think we have donated twenty-four mobile field hospitals to countries such as yourself to help get after the medical and any other type pandemic, categories of disaster, whatever you decide that you may need to use these facilities for.  As you have heard, they are self-contained, they are mobile which is probably the most important thing and it’s a donation from the United States to your country.”


Reporting for News Five, I am Isani Cayetano.

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