FREEPORT, Grand Bahama, The Bahamas — During an official press conference on Friday, June 17, 2022 at the Ministry for Grand Bahama, the Public Hospitals Authority signed a contract for approximately $1.6 million with Pinnacle Investment Company Limited for the renovation and upgrades of the morgue at the Rand Memorial Hospital.
The contract will also include the completion of renovation of the hospital corridors that were damaged from Hurricane Dorian and further compromised from the weather system that recently passed through Grand Bahama.
In executing the contract, Minister of Health and Wellness, the Hon. Dr. Michael Darville noted that the existing structure at the Rand Memorial Hospital and its morgue is severely compromised, adding that climate change, as well as the impacts of Covid-19 and Hurricane Dorian, placed a great strain on services provided by the Rand Memorial Hospital and the morgue.
“I know that the former administration did some work at the hospital, but the morgue was not touched,” said Minister Darville.
“This contract signing is the continuation of the upgrades at the Rand Memorial Hospital. Now, we have made it clear, in our Blueprint for change, as well as the Speech from the Throne, that this Davis-led Administration will be leading the charge for the construction of two state-of-the-art hospitals, one in Grand Bahama and one in New Providence.
“But while that is happening we cannot allow the facilities to continue to deteriorate. So, we’re going to pump some money into getting this morgue up and running and running effectively and to prepare ourselves if we find ourselves in a similar situation as with Hurricane Dorian.”
The Health and Wellness Minister pointed to the importance of morgue services to the operation of any hospital, which involves the management of receipt, storage and release of deceased bodies of loved ones. This process, he said, has to be carried out safely, effectively and it has to be done in a certain time limit.
“The contract we’re executing today will allow for the renovation and expansion work to the existing morgue, which will improve the services at the morgue, and do some additional renovation,” said Dr. Darville. “This new infrastructure will allow us to be more efficient, we will provide better services and we will expand the areas necessary to carry out autopsies, and the staff will not be compromised.
“The execution of this contract today means that Grand Bahama can expect in approximately six to seven months, a modern morgue facility.”
Minister Darville said there’s a lot more work that needs to be done at the Rand Memorial Hospital. He noted that the recent passing of the potential tropical cyclone over Grand Bahama, which brought heavy rains and flooding, left the facility and a lot of the work that was already done at the Rand compromised.
“This is a significant step to the full restoration of healthcare infrastructure here on Grand Bahama.”
Minister for Grand Bahama, the Hon. Ginger Moxey said that she was excited about the scope of works that will be carried out at the Rand memorial Hospital. She noted that renovation works at the morgue at the Rand was a long-time need.
“In our Blueprint for change, we spoke about bringing relief to the people of Grand Bahama Island,” said Minister Moxey. “The Prime Minister is so focused on recovery and the rebuilding of this island, so it was so encouraging to have him here on Grand Bahama as a part of this announcement.
“We are fully committed to the health and wellness of the people of Grand Bahama. “This is just another step in the right direction and in carrying out all of the good things we have planned for Grand Bahama. There is so much more in store, including the construction of a new hospital with an oncology section as a major focus.
“In the meantime, I want to thank the administrators, the doctors, the nurses and the staff at the Rand Memorial Hospital who continue to provide great service to the people of Grand Bahama, even in the environment that they’re working in. But they know that they have a government who will get the job done and provide better working environments for them to work in.”