33 more beds provided at GPHC’s maternity unit

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Additional beds at the GPHC's Maternity Unit

Women can now deliver babies in a more comfortable and hygienic environment at the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation, as a new wing was on Wednesday commissioned at the maternity unit.

Minister of Health Dr. Frank Anthony who was present at the opening, said the improvement to the obstetrics and gynecological department is welcomed, as there are over 14,000 births in Guyana each year.

“In Guyana we normally would get 14,000 to 15,000 births a year and about 40 per cent of those births happen here at the Georgetown Public Hospital. And not only do they manage this volume of patients, but they also manage the most high-risk patients here at this hospital. So, it’s important that we do so in the right ambiance.”

The GPHC alone delivers almost 6,000 babies every year. The maternity unit was expanded by 48 per cent and includes an addition of 33 beds; 17 for prenatal and 16 for postnatal care.

Before the addition, there were only 69 beds and the unit had an occupancy rate of 104 per cent.

Chief Executive Officer (ag) of the GPHC, Dr. Robbie Rambarran said the expansion was fortunately completed to cater for the peak month of births.

“We are having an average admission of 8,500 which represents an average of 25 admissions daily and about 15-17 deliveries. Needless to say, with the high volume of admission, we had significant shortages for space during the busier peak season.”

The new wing is a joint initiative between the Government of Guyana and the Canadian Bank Note, CBN, represented by the Guyana Lottery Company.

CBN donated $50 million towards the project, while the Government contributed $41 million to make the expansion a reality.

General Manager of the Guyana Lottery Company, Tracy Lewis said quality maternal care is important to a nation. She also committed a further $50 million towards the government, for another project.

Meanwhile, Dr. Anthony used the occasion to encourage pregnant and breastfeeding women to get vaccinated against Covid-19.

He noted that since the pandemic began, more than 138 persons pregnant persons have tested positive for COVID-19, four of which have died.

“We really need to encourage pregnant women in our country to get vaccinated. It is so important because it will prevent needless infections and it will also prevent deaths.”

Minister Anthony said it is imperative for women, pregnant or breastfeeding to be vaccinated in any of the three trimesters. He reiterated that the vaccine is safe for the woman and child.