The emergency field hospital established at the Family Life Centre to support the local COVID-19 preparedness strategy was fully demobilized on Sunday, 28 February 2021. All assets of the 60-bed facility have been appropriately placed into storage by Hazard Management Cayman Islands (HMCI) should the need arise for the hospital to be remobilised or reallocated for other national and potentially regional disaster situations.
“Sustainability was the key word throughout the design and mobilisation stages of the field hospital. Everything was done with the objective of its remobilisation as a whole or in part in the Family Life Centre or in other locations,” explained Public Works Department Senior Project Manager Simon Griffiths. “In addition, certain assets were chosen for relocation within the HSA once the hospital was demobilised.”
A few examples of relocated equipment include the standby generator that will be sent to Faith Hospital in Cayman Brac and the mobile hand wash basins to be used at various locations including the Airport COVID-19 Vaccination Clinic and COVID-19 testing district clinics. The bed partitions and fully demountable electrical system will be stored in a warehouse with other equipment from the temporary facility and may be utilised by HMCI for emergency sheltering purposes.
“It’s pleasing to report that this attention to sustainable ethic has worked as even the plastic sheeting used to shield certain parts has been saved and will be used elsewhere,” Mr Griffiths pointed out.
Coordinated by the National Emergency Operations Centre (NEOC) in collaboration with the government, charities and the private sector, the emergency field hospital was set-up in May 2020 to accommodate an overflow of COVID-19 patients should local healthcare facilities reach capacity. With effective implementation of precautionary measures such as social distancing, hand washing and the wearing of masks, the Cayman Islands was able to avoid an outbreak of COVID-19 and utilization of the field hospital.
“The NEOC and supporting organisations initiated this project with the single-minded focus of saving lives. We wanted to ensure we had the infrastructure in place to handle the very worst scenario,” said HSA Chief Executive Officer Lizzette Yearwood.
“If the field hospital was ever to be utilised it would mean that all the beds of the local hospitals have been filled and we are now in a national emergency situation,” Ms Yearwood noted. “Therefore, it has always been our hope that the facility would not have to be used, but if needed, it can always be remobilised in a relatively short time.”
The UK Association for Project Management awarded the Cayman Islands Government winner of the social project of the year category for the cross-sector project management approach taken for the construction and delivery of the field hospital.
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