By Sarjo Brito
President Adama Barrow, Thursday, December 2nd, 2021, presided over the laying of the foundation stone for the multifaceted national emergency treatment centre in Farato, West Coast Region. The state-of-the-art complex once completed, is to serve as a centre that will respond to the country’s current and future public health emergencies.
Speaking at the ceremony, President Barrow said this project is part of a renewed process of revolutionising the Gambia’s healthcare delivery system, especially with the Covid-19 pandemic which continues to strain health sectors across the world.
The president said: “It is common knowledge that the frequency of pandemics is increasing globally and without warning. Health systems the worldwide are now struggling to cope with the demand for health services. To address such challenges, we are here today for the construction of a high-quality treatment centre with up-to-date equipment to effectively manage patients requiring special attention.”
The Gambian leader called on the private sector and other development partners to compliment government’s efforts to provide better healthcare services to the Gambian people.
“We have the collective task and goal of providing and sustaining quality, efficient and timely healthcare for all. My government has the will to work with everyone for the attainment of our development objectives in the best interest of the people,” the president said.
The National Emergency Treatment Centre is a World Bank funded project. The cost of the project is estimated at a staggering amount of 22,760,785.9 USD. The treatment centre will comprise the emergency treatment centre (ETC), intensive care unit with 20 beds, emergency observation and treatment centre with 84 beds, public health and training centre, conference centre and utility buildings required for the effective functioning of the facilities. The facility is also the first phase of a 1500 bed teaching hospital according to the President.