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Government of Jamaica

HOSPITALS COMPLETE REPAIRS TO HURRICANE DAMAGES WITH NHF FUNDING

HOSPITALS COMPLETE REPAIRS TO HURRICANE DAMAGES WITH NHF FUNDING

Grants amounting to approximately $140 million from the National Health Fund (NHF) have enabled repairs to eleven hospitals which were damaged by hurricanes during the 2004 and 2005 hurricane seasons. Mr. Baldwin Tucker, Institutional Benefits Manager, NHF, says the majority of repairs were roof repairs and that hurricane straps were installed in order to minimize future roof damage from hurricane force winds.

In the Southern Regional Health Authority five hospitals have carried out repairs to their buildings ? Percy Junor, Black River, Lionel Town, Mandeville and Chapelton hospitals. In the Western Regional Health Authority Cornwall Regional, Falmouth and Savanna-la-Mar hospitals completed repairs while repairs are ongoing at the Noel Holmes hospital.

In the North East Regional Health Authority Annotto Bay and St. Ann?s Bay Hospitals and in the South East Regional Health Authority – the Princess Margaret Hospital also completed repairs to damages sustained from last year?s hurricanes.

In addition the Princess Margaret Hospital received NHF grants to purchase a new telephone system and a new 220 KVA generator which is able to run all emergency areas during a power outage.

Mr. Tucker says in the event of a hurricane during the 2006 hurricane season the NHF will provide the funding necessary to help the health sector move speedily to respond to any disaster in order to protect the nation?s health.

Since 2004 the NHF also approved over $18 million to assist with environmental interventions associated with the passage of hurricanes. The NHF has provided a grant of $3 million dollars to upgrade the National Emergency Operations Centre for health.

Contact: Rosemarie Lee, Public Information Officer NHF, Tel: 906-1106

Shermaine Robotham, 756-1068, 997-5442

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