Surgeries now possible at some hinterland hospitals as $1B spent on upgrades

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Health facilities across the country will see much-needed upgrades in the coming years and with nearly $1 billion already spent in 2022, some hinterland hospitals can now provide surgeries to residents.

Health Minister Dr. Frank Anthony, during a recent interview with the News Room, said that the ministry is assessing the services offered at all 420 healthcare facilities countrywide.

Based on those assessments, it was found that upgrades, ranging from toilet facilities to operating theatres, are needed at many facilities.

“This year we spent close to $1 billion upgrading a lot of facilities around the country.

“…We have upgraded these infrastructures and the feedback is that people feel more satisfied, so that’s one project that has made a big impact on people’s lives,” Dr. Anthony said.

Health Minister Dr. Frank Anthony (Photo: News Room/December 23, 2022)

One key service that is now possible because of the upgrades is the provision of surgeries at some hinterland hospitals, the Health Minister said.

According to him, the theatres at the Moruca and Mabaruma hospitals in Region One (Barima- Waini), were upgraded to provide surgeries, effectively reducing the need for residents to spend hefty sums travelling to Georgetown for treatment.

Emphasising the importance of these upgrades, the Health Minister said that 32 surgeries were completed in just one weekend at the Moruca hospital. Those surgeries were done earlier in December.

Beyond these upgrades, however, the government plans to build several new facilities in coming years.

During a recent outreach to Region One, President Dr. Irfaan Ali lamented the condition of many health facilities across the country and announced the government’s plan to spend $125 billion to upgrade hinterland health facilities over the next three years.

Outside of the investments in the hinterland facilities, President Ali said that the government is hoping to modernise healthcare throughout Guyana. According to him, each region will have at least one regional hospital. In some regions, based on population size, there may be several regional hospitals.

Already, contracts were awarded to China’s Sinopharm for the construction of six new hospitals across Guyana. And new SMART hospitals were developed in four areas; one will will be completed at Paramakatoi, Region Eight (Potaro- Siparuni), in 2023.

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