JIS News

Story Highlights

  • Health Minister, Dr. the Hon. Fenton Ferguson, says that work is advanced on the permanent Ebola quarantine facility being built at the Cornwall Regional Hospital in Montego Bay, St. James.
  • He said that the facility should be completed within another three weeks.
  • Dr. Ferguson said the holding area is also well on the way to being ready for use “in the event of an Ebola case showing up in Western Jamaica”.

Health Minister, Dr. the Hon. Fenton Ferguson, says that work is advanced on the permanent Ebola quarantine facility being built at the Cornwall Regional Hospital in Montego Bay, St. James.

He said that the facility should be completed within another three weeks.

“The permanent isolation area that is being developed, I am very pleased with where we are now. My own expectations from what I have seen are that within another two to three weeks it should be ready,” he said.

The Minister was speaking to JIS News on November 7, following a tour of the facility. This follows a visit on October 29 to observe the progress of work on the temporary quarantine area.

Dr. Ferguson said the holding area is also well on the way to being ready for use “in the event of an Ebola case showing up in Western Jamaica”.

“Based on my last visit, which was about two weeks ago, I am very pleased that they are making progress. Where they are now with the holding area, it is well designed and I am really extending congratulations to the hospital’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO) (Anthony Smikle), and Chairman of the hospital’s Ebola preparedness committee, Dr. (Barbara) Grandison and her team, for the exceptional work they have done in this short period. I think we are now ready for action,” he said.

He said that “very soon” the press will be invited to view the facilities. “With what I am seeing at the holding area… and the explanations that have been given to me…I am very satisfied that they are significantly on their way…more than 95 per cent ready on that facility,” he told JIS News.

The Ministry of Health, through the Western Regional Health Authority (WRHA), is spending some $30 million on Ebola preparations at the Cornwall Regional Hospital.