The Queen Elizabeth Hospital Respiratory Unit will be receiving facelift compliments of The Broadway to Barbados Charity Trust (BBCT) and Massy Foundation in collaboration with the Queen Elizabeth Hospital. The renovation is a joint venture by both parties which split the cost of the renovation and equipment needed in half. The Massy Foundation provided $175,000, Broadway to Barbados Charitable Trust contributed $175,000 and the Queen Elizabeth Hospital provided labour and the necessary engineers.
At a press conference held this morning at the Human Resource Department, Martindale’s Road, St Michael, Chairman of the Broadway to Barbados Charitable Trust, Robert Bourque said the $350,000 renovation to the 1988 structure was necessary as the unit desperately needed new equipment to provide a critical service administered by the state-owned hospital.
“The project started off by Dr Anne-Marie Hassle and the pulmonary unit folks stating some months back, that all of their equipment had broken down so they had to shut down the unit. It is a critical unit in terms of critical care for the hospital and from my personal standpoint and the Trust’s standpoint, it was unacceptable. So we mobilized quickly to get the equipment that was needed,” Neilands said, adding that the Trust has provided a bronchoscope and the needed cleaning machine to sterilize the equipment after it has been used in the respiratory department.
“We needed a separate facility because obviously, it is cleaning bronchoscopes from persons who have used them. They are contaminated and they have to be cleaned in a proper manner. Having said that, we decided after speaking to Dr Hassle that we wanted to do more than just provide the equipment. It was necessary that we developed what I refer to as a state-of-the art pulmonary unit facility,” Bourque said.
Director of the Massy Foundation, David Neilands said that the $175,000 to the renovation of the Respiratory Unit is money well spent. It is critical to the hospital as it treats conditions with involve breathing.
“… As a unit which has been in existence for close to 30 years and which serves somewhere between 1,000 to 1,200 patients annually for all types of respiratory diseases, we believe that the overhaul of the Respiratory Unit is indeed timely. The preservation of a fresh and sanitary environment is critical to any hospital and equally important for its department which deals with conditions involving breathing, namely but not limited to asthma, lung cancer, sleep apnea and tuberculosis,” Neilands said, adding that the donation cements Massy’s purpose to create and transform lives by investing in areas that can make a difference to the lives of a cross-section of persons within the community.
Consultant in charge of the Respiratory Unit Dr Dawn Alleyne said that the major problem with the respiratory unit was that it had served its purpose.
“I think it is time to move forward with the development of the unit [and create] a space which meets international standards, so that those people who have procedures and those who are coming in as outpatients are not mixed,” Alleyne said.
Head of the Department of Medicine Dr Anne-Marie Hassell said that in addition to the Broadway to Barbados Charitable Trust committing to the renovation of the respiratory unit, they have also committed to providing training for members of staff in the use of the new equipment.
“The Broadway to Barbados Charitable Trust also provides the finances for the training [of staff]. In terms of education, separate to the [provision of the] equipment, the trust has not only agreed to help with the accident and emergency, but we already have the Medical Intensive Care Nurses in an educational programme,” Hassle noted, adding that the Broadway to Barbados Trust is also assisting with some of the supply and demand needs of the state-owned hospital.
“We do have supply and demand needs, and frequently if we have a $100,000 piece of equipment and I do not have the $40 to pay for the gel to put on the equipment, then I cannot use the equipment appropriately. We have created the Supply Pack programme so that when we run low with simple items, which can run from gloves, gowns or any time of equipment, we have a system where we get what we need. So our system is running very smoothly through the efforts of the Broadway to Barbados Charitable Trust,” Hassle remarked.
Consultant in the Accident and Emergency Department, Dr Joanne Bradford said that the donation of the equipment, as well as the renovation, will assist in reducing the number of asthma patients that would seek treatment at the Accident and Emergency Department. (LG)