Will hospital equipment dry rot?

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By the time the Ministry of Health is ready to occupy the Children’s Hospital, in Couva, later this year, millions of dollars in equipment could be useless, according to former Health Minister Dr Fuad Khan.

But current Health Minister Terrence Deyalsingh says an audit will have to be done to assess the functionality of the equipment before the hospital comes fully on stream.

The hospital, which has not admitted a single patient since it was officially commissioned by the Kamla Persad-Bissessar administration in August 2015, is outfitted with a Magnetom Verio MRI machine, the first Three Tesla Magnetic Resonance Imaging (3T MRI) in the Caribbean and one of 300 operational in the world.

It also has ultrasound equipment, neonatal intensive care units, pulse oximetres, incubators, general X-ray units, electrical birthing beds, CT scanner and other high-tech digital equipment.

Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley has given the mandate to find an operator for the hospital by April.

Asked whether he was concerned that the state-of-the-art equipment will be dysfunctional by the time the hospital is opened, Deyalsingh, in an interview with Guardian Media, said he could not…

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