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Minister of Health and Environment, Rudyard Spencer, on Friday (September 12), presented a cheque valued at $47 million, to representatives of the St. Joseph’s Hospital in Kingston, as the first payment for the purchase of the facility.
The acquisition of the hospital, will allow the Ministry to enhance its service offerings to the growing population, and to facilitate the relocation and expansion of some services at the Kingston Public Hospital (KPH).
At the handing over ceremony, held at the Ministry’s headquarters in Kingston, Mr. Spencer said that the acquisition “would form an integral part of the Government’s strategy in improving health, especially in the area of trauma.”
He added that this acquisition would fit “nicely,” into a strategy to bring a new and modern trauma centre to Kingston.
“We want to put St. Joseph’s into a real place of excellence that Jamaica can be proud of, where we can offer the kind of service that we are known to offer, but under better conditions…that are conducive to health care delivery, service that will see people recuperating much easier and faster. In other words, we want to create an environment that is not all together a hospital environment, and so we believe St. Joseph’s, with its vast acreage, fits the bill,” the Minister said.
He pointed out that until the acquisition is completed, the hospital would remain open for business as usual and would continue to provide excellent standards of service, in several areas of health care delivery.
“Patients who use the facility will continue to pay, because the Government is not as yet the legal owner of the property,” he advised.
The Minister pointed out that a management team would be announced, to ensure the smooth transfer of the facility.
“I wish to commend the leadership, staff and partners for their patience while we complete the purchase, and for continuing to honour their commitment to the people of Jamaica, by providing quality health care to their patients,” Mr. Spencer said.