A $31.4M Water Ambulance has been commissioned and dedicated to the village of Baracara.
The Ministry of Public Health presented the water vehicle as a gift to the community and, according to the Department of Public Information, it will help to ensure that emergency cases are transported from the village which is approximately 45 miles from the town of New Amsterdam.
This is part of the ministry’s vision of ensuring riverine communities have access to health services similar to those on the coast.
The vessel will be staffed by a ‘Boat Hand’ and Captain who have been employed from the village. The water ambulance will be equipped with the necessary emergency equipment to transport two patients at a time.
Community Health Worker, Kevon Joseph, who is attached to the Baracara Health Centre, explained that the ambulance will make a significant difference in how emergency cases are attended. He said that it was previously costly for persons to transport their emergency cases. However, the new boat will see persons saving at least $40,000 which would have been expended for chartering a regular boat to transport patients.
Officials from the Ministry of Public Health, including Minister Volda Lawrence and Permanent Secretary Colette Adams, were present for the commissioning of the vehicle.
Minister Lawrence indicated that the public health sector has been able to cross another significant milestone and it is expected that the residents of Baracara and those living along the Canje River will benefit from this intervention by the government.