0

Carnival To Help Fund Rand Rebuild

Minister of Health Dr Duane Sands.

Minister of Health Dr Duane Sands.

By LEANDRA ROLLE

rrolle@tribunemedia.net

THE Ministry of Health and The Public Hospitals Authority signed a memorandum of understanding yesterday with Carnival Corporation & PLC to support the restoration of the Rand Memorial Hospital following Hurricane Dorian.

Health Minister Dr Duane Sands said the partnership will provide funding for flood damage repairs at the Rand and will also assist with the replacement of damaged medical equipment.

“At the Rand Memorial Hospital, one of the major healthcare facilities in The Bahamas, there was a significant problem with black water flooding, so much so that we have had to take out of commission about 75 per cent of the square footage,” he told reporters during a press conference at the ministry yesterday.

“Recognising the challenge with the Rand Memorial Hospital and health services in Grand Bahama in general (the Carnival Corporation & PLC) have decided to partner with the Minister of Health and the Public Hospitals Authority to help us remediate the challenges at the Rand.”

Speaking to reporters yesterday, senior vice president of Carnival Corporation & PLC Captain Michael Kaczmarek said the company was grateful to offer help in the wake of this natural disaster.

“We met with government and one of the things what the government told us was we would like ya’ll to do two things – to get your business restarted again and to start bringing cruise ships back to Grand Bahama island and we’d also like some help with the hospital,” he said.

“We have a long relationship with The Bahamas, and we feel as partners that it just makes sense for us to be able to help out in these areas where we can so thank you for that opportunity.”

In September, Dr Sands revealed that the total cost to repair the Rand will roughly be around $19m.

However, it is unclear what the total cost would be in assisting with the critical repairs of the Rand in view of this partnership.

“The actual cost is uncertain, but it’s substantial and we are pressed for time because of the potential for mould. We’re trying to combine a somewhat tight budget with a limited time in being able to do as much as we can. But it is a substantial cost,” Captain Kaczmarek said.

When asked about the labour efforts, Captain Kaczmarek replied that the majority of the labour workforce will be made up of volunteers from the Grand Bahama shipyard.

“We will probably use some Bahamians and we have a few specialists coming in from Puerto Rico doing the same kind of work, but the majority of the labour effort will actually be coming from the Grand Bahama shipyard,” he said.

The Rand Memorial Hospital is expected to be opened by the end of this year. However, Dr Sands said full remediation of the Rand is not expected to be completed until March 2020. 

“If we are going to rebuild Grand Bahama, we have to have safe delivery of healthcare and people are not going to want to remain in temporary facilities indefinitely and so we believe that the safe remediation and repair of the Rand is exactly what the doctor ordered. So let’s get back into a facility that is safe and reliable,” he added.   

“We also believe that there should be a consolidation of the number of clinics in Grand Bahama. In the PAH system in Grand Bahama, we have nine facilities now, including Grand Cay. There’s probably no need for nine clinics and so the way forward, we imagine a leaner more effective system of clinics that are better designed, more appropriate to the threats and to the care that the public demands and deserves and more importantly, which is heavily focused on community outreach.”

Comments

proudloudandfnm 4 days, 6 hours ago

Can't rebuild that old run down piece of crap, we need a brand new hospital. Carnival will donate, that's good, now go get the rest of the 75 to 80 million need from Hutch and the port families. Damn man. These people make millions off of us and now it's to pay up and they wanna hide?!?!? PUT YA FOOT DOWN AND MAKE THEM PAY!!!

1

Well_mudda_take_sic 4 days, 5 hours ago

Is this suppose to be in lieu of Carnival ever compensating us for all of the shiit their cruise ships dumped in our pristine waters over the last three plus decades? If so, we Bahamians got the raw end of that deal.

0

boopboop 4 days, 2 hours ago

Who cares if that's "why" they are doing it.... At least they're doing something!! Thank you Carnival!!

0

TalRussell 4 days, 2 hours ago

Unbelievable, Hospital gone, Airport gone, Schools gone!, Leadership gone, Whampoa is back for even more quick millions dollars. Can't just make this up!

A colony by world standards ranked way up there for its supposedly high wealth and income per member populaces - but for the grace God, was it not for the much appreciated charitable quick post Hurricane Dorian action taken by Comrade Samaritans Purse - we Norther comrade Grand Bahamalanders, wouldn't have had access Emergency Field Hospital .... Some Quasi Government, and Central Government out Nassau that they have owing and running FREE port . ....

0

boopboop 4 days, 1 hour ago

Given the amount of money the Port and its other companies have made in Freeport over the years, building a mordern and bigger brand new hospital, equipping it with a couple of fire houses, around the island, fleet of police cars fire trucks and ambulances should be like zero!Crazy that government never made things like this mandatory with their contractual agreements to support essential services that they benefit from daily but never pay a dime to use.

Government should consider annual taxation (couple million each) to all these big projects as well as major hotels especially Atlantis Pointe Baha Mar towards these essential services

0

TalRussell 4 days ago

The private Sovereign Authority being exercised under FREE port's Quasi government, might be sometin right in lane way for Comrade Adrian Francis's Operation Sovereign Bahamaland focus on, yes, no.... Just can't make up better case launch Sovereign Authority investigation ....

0

proudloudandfnm 4 days ago

I can't believe how the Port Authority is just being allowed to sit on their fat, rich asses and do absolutely nothing after the worst hurricane to ever the island. And government isn't even trying to pressure them. Time for the St. Georges and the Haywards to go. Freeport needs to stop paying the port, get a bill send it back with a note, I'll pay when you pay. And they made millions off of us Bahamians.... They have to go.....

0

TalRussell 4 days ago

Ma Comrade Proud, me have the confidence that the Abacoians independent perseverance will bring them to a better than before side of post Hurricane Dorian ... wish could express same confidence in Free porters have comprised Fifth generation have voluntarily adjusted living under Sir Stafford's and Wallace Groves, designer Hawksbill Creek Agreement's private Quasi government's rule ....

0

Sign in to comment