A patient being transported from the Road Town ferry dock to Peebles Hospital.
Photo Credit: Clifton Skelton/BVI Platinum News
Not much work has been done to restore the vessel provided to the Health Services Authority (BVIHSA) to provide health emergency trips between Virgin Gorda and Tortola, but plans to have an interim provider in place are moving ahead.
Chief Executive Officer of the BVIHSA, Mrs. Darlene Carty Baptiste told reporters last Thursday, February 7, that they have selected a private provider for the emergency service, but further approval will be needed from the BVIHSA Board.
"We have done due diligence on the administrative side and we have selected one of the two [companies that submitted bids for the service]," Mrs. Carty Baptiste stated.
She said that the BVIHSA is just waiting for the provider to supply validated liability coverage. According to the CEO, the BVIHSA took into consideration the provider´s safety, capacity, coverage, after hours and building the comfortable level in the staff for the type of vessel that will used to transport patients.
However, she did not disclose what type of vessel will be used by the service provider.
Chairman of the BVIHSA, John Cline stated that the boat which was identified and handed over by Government to the BVIHSA is in need of repairs before it can be put to use. He confirmed that the boat is still sitting on the dock.
"We are not going to sit and wait for those repairs. As a matter of fact, two companies that have submitted proposals to provide a special boat to for the medical emergencies. We will review each proposal and make a determination soon. This will assist us in the meantime that the repairs are being conducted to the boat which was given to us by Government," Bishop Cline stated.
At a community meeting on Virgin Gorda last year, Cline informed residents of the boat provided by Government and at the time indicated that repairs needed to be made to the engine. Residents lashed out at the plan to repair the boat's engine and suggested that a new boat be sought.