Gov­er­nor Gen­eral vis­its Owen King EU Hos­pi­tal

The Star (St. Lucia) - - LOCAL -

On Wed­nes­day Fe­bru­ary 10th the Gov­er­nor Gen­eral of Saint Lu­cia, Her Ex­cel­lency Dame Pear­lette Louisy, re­ceived a per­sonal tour of the New Na­tional Hos­pi­tal, soon to be known as the Owen King EU Hos­pi­tal at the of­fi­cial nam­ing cer­e­mony on Sun­day Fe­bru­ary 21st.

The nam­ing of the hos­pi­tal forms part of the ac­tiv­i­ties mark­ing Saint Lu­cia’s 37th An­niver­sary of In­de­pen­dence.

At the com­mence­ment of the tour the Gov­er­nor Gen­eral was pre­sented with copy of the 2016 Mil­len­nium Heights Med­i­cal Com­plex Cal­en­dar by Per­ma­nent Sec­re­tary in the Min­istry of Health, Conitha Thomas who was among a team of of­fi­cials from the Min­istry present to re­ceive the Gov­er­nor Gen­eral.

The nearly-two-hour tour al­lowed the Gov­er­nor Gen­eral to see first-hand some of the key ar­eas within the new hos­pi­tal which are lack­ing at the Vic­to­ria Hos­pi­tal or sig­nif­i­cantly im­prove on the fa­cil­i­ties there; ar­eas such as the Pae­di­atric Ward, Spe­cial Baby Care Unit, Cen­tral Ster­il­iza­tion Ser­vices Depart­ment, Phys­io­ther­apy Depart­ment, the state-of-the-art Op­er­at­ing The­atres, Ex­panded A&E Depart­ment, Ra­di­ol­ogy - equipped with the lat­est tech­nol­ogy such as mam­mog­ra­phy and MRI equip­ment, and the In­ten­sive Care Unit.

“It is a very im­pres­sive build­ing and my fer­vent hope is that we keep it as func­tional as it is and as an­tic­i­pated. I can look and see that it is an ex­pen­sive un­der­tak­ing but just to keep it run­ning it’s go­ing to be as ex­pen­sive, I sus­pect. Ev­ery­body I met, the nurses, were very ex­cited and I made the point to them; I said, ‘I hope in the next year or two you are as ex­cited as you are to­day,’ and they all promised that they would be and they are re­ally look­ing for­ward to it. So I am glad I had that op­por­tu­nity and I can say to the whole of Saint Lu­cia and the re­gion that we have in­deed a first class health fa­cil­ity,” the Gov­er­nor Gen­eral said at the end of the tour.

Dame Pear­lette added that she has been to other fa­cil­i­ties in some de­vel­oped coun­tries and the New Na­tional Hos­pi­tal, in her view, ranks right along­side the best of them. “My fer­vent hope re­ally is that we can keep it and main­tain it and de­liver the type of health­care that we all de­serve.”

Com­mis­sion­ing Di­rec­tor for the New Na­tional Hos­pi­tal, Dwight Cal­ixte, said, “The tour by the Gov­er­nor Gen­eral marks the next phase of pub­lic aware­ness for the hos­pi­tal. Mov­ing for­ward, group­ing such as Staff As­so­ci­a­tions, the Cham­ber of Com­merce, schools round the is­land, the Med­i­cal and Den­tal As­so­ci­a­tion and the me­dia will be in­vited to tour the fa­cil­ity to get a first-hand view of the of­fer­ing of the new hos­pi­tal.”

The Euro­pean Union funded both the con­struc­tion and equip­ping of the Owen King EU Hos­pi­tal, an ul­tra-mod­ern treat­ment and care fa­cil­ity, to the tune of EC $167 mil­lion. The new hos­pi­tal is the largest in­fras­truc­tural pro­ject ever ex­e­cuted by the Euro­pean Union in the East­ern Caribbean.

Gov­er­nor Gen­eral Dame Pear­lette Louisy (left) be­ing pre­sented with a copy of the 2016 Mil­len­nium Heights Med­i­cal

Com­plex Cal­en­dar by Per­ma­nent Sec­re­tary in the Min­istry of Health, Conitha Thomas.

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