Patients moved from Cornwall Regional
Patients in the main building of the Cornwall Regional Hospital were relocated over the weekend to the Falmouth Hospital in the neighbouring parish of Trelawny in an evacuation exercise.
According to Health Minister Dr Christopher Tufton, the evacuation allows for the completion of repairs in a more efficient manner, while allowing nurses and doctors to operate in a more comfortable environment.
"We think things should be a bit easier now despite the logistical challenges of multiple locations, and we can now get on with the business of going full throttle in terms of restoration of the main building, hopefully, through the end of this year when we can see a renewed Cornwall Regional hospital," Tufton said during his weekly tour of the heath facility.
Services at the hospital were significantly scaled down early this year after the ventilation system began emitting noxious fumes.
Some of the services were transferred to makeshift locations on the compound as well as to the adjoining West Jamaica Conference Centre.
Following investigations carried out by the Ministry of Health and the Pan American Health Organization, it was discovered that the fumes were the result of fibreglass particles from the ventilation system coming loose after being disturbed by efforts to clean the vents.
Tufton also said that the Falmouth hospital has been renovated to increase the number of operating theatres from two to four, with an additional section being refurbished to accommodate patients who require surgery.
The 87-bed facility is being equipped with 55 additional beds, and surgery hours have been extended.
However, a surgery team will remain at the Mount Salem clinic, which has a temporary operating theatre to accommodate accident and emergency cases.