St. Joseph Mercy Hospital launches $20M COVID-19 testing and treatment centre

A section of the facility on the East Coast

The St. Joseph Mercy Hospital (SJMH) has launched a brand new COVID-19 testing and treatment facility at the St. Paul Retreat Centre at Vryheid’s Lust, East Coast Demerara (ECD).

The new “COVID-19 Testing, Treatment and Isolation Centre” meets all national criteria for such a facility and was licensed by Guyana’s Ministry of Public Health (MOPH) after a stringent inspection of the premises and evaluation of the services offered.

The hospital spent GYD20 million to develop the centre as an all-inclusive COVID-19 facility that embraces the unique needs, challenges and circumstances of patients, and gives them the opportunity to get testing and treatment..

Deputy Chief Executive Officer (DCEO) of SJMH, Deborrah Ramsay, said the hospital was keenly aware that COVID-19 testing and treatment can be overwhelming and unknown territory for many persons, and wanted to make the hospital’s highly skilled personnel and medical resources available to help control the spread of the disease in Guyana, and assist those who contract it.

Ramsay said the Catholic Church of Guyana joined the hospital’s cause, and Bishop Francis Alleyne of the Diocese of Georgetown allowed the SJMH to use one of the church’s buildings to house the COVID-19 centre.

According to Ramsay, the hospital spared no effort to provide top-rated medical products, amenities and services at the centre—geared toward efficient screening for coronavirus, and when necessary, providing the most comfortable environment for persons who require institutional isolation, so they can survive and thrive.

To this end, the COVID-19 Testing, Treatment and Isolation Centre” was fitted with 37 beds, a broad system of air conditioning units and an adequate number of sanitary blocks, while also meeting MOPH air-quality requirements. Staff members are fully trained and equipped with Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) necessary to effectively prevent contagion.

Persons who have tested positive at the Centre and decide to be admitted there would not be required to pay for the initial test.  All tests required prior to discharge will attract a fee.

The SJMH says it remains committed to delivering the highest level of care to those seeking medical attention and looks forward to continuing serving the public, in keeping with its 75 years of quality care.

For more information, please contact Centre Manager, Jerri Dias at 220-2959 or Deborrah Ramsay at 227-7139. You can also email [email protected]