DfID Awaiting New Hospital Location to Finish Business Case

BRADES – The Department for International Development says the completion of the business case to fund a new hospital for the island is dependent on the government’s choice of a greenfield site to build it.
According to local DfID representative Martin Dawson, completing the case within short hinges on this decision.
Discover Montserrat has learned that two options for constructing the new hospital were the field across from the Government Headquarters and a location in Little Bay.
Since the reconstruction element of the Hospital and Health Improvement Project was halted, a technical team compromising Public Works, Health and DfID have been looking at new locations.
Building at Brades would mean an increase in traffic as it will be in the same location as government headquarters, the police and fire stations as well as other commercial offices.
While some government leaders prefer the Little Bay option, it would mean a significant investment in cutting a new road through Drummonds to service a more direct route for the island’s larger communities.
Montserrat lost 30 million dollars when the infrastructural portion of the project was halted late last year by the new government. Only the soft side which included emergency care, elderly care, NCD prevention, a functional review and health financing continues.
Dawson has said while health finance reform was important it was not the issue which would cause further delay in a new hospital for Montserrat.
The Hon. Minister of Health Delmaude Ryan has stated that the government wants a hospital that make provisions for the current and future health care needs of Montserrat.
Since the start of the volcanic crisis, the Glendon Hospital has been operating from its current location in St. John’s which was once a primary school. While it has seen additions over the years, previous governments began the process for a new business case to improve and modernise the hospital.

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3 Responses

  1. Pat Ryan says:

    Apart from other concerns, are we considering implications re noise and heavy traffic in the choice of a suitable hospital site?

  2. A Reader says:

    The writer states “Montserrat lost 30 million dollars when the infrastructural portion of the project was halted late last year by the new government. ”

    This is an incorrect statement as pointed out repeatedly by the Premier and the Minister of Health.
    At no point was there an approved project to start building the new hospital. There was an indicative program with some funds earmarked for the construction of a hospital.

    Several design iterations were made and the one presented to DFID was costed at around 60 Million dollars.
    DFID and Montserrat Government officials agreed that it was not prudent to start the construction of a 60 Million dollar facility with an indicative funding allocation of what was actually around 24 million dollars. That seems to me to be a common sense decision.

    So the new government did not stop the hospital project; it was in fact still born. The available funding did not match the design. That is a non-starter.

    The new government and DFID then agreed to come up with a new project where the design would match the funding.

    Nothing was lost; but the construction of the hospital has been delayed due to the poor planning of the previous government.

    It is now left for the new government to hopefully get it right.

    I think they should build it at the same location.

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