Prime Minister Kamla Persad- Bissessar yesterday called on the Tobago House of Assembly and all other parties involved to ensure the remaining phases of the new Scarborough Hospital are completed as soon as possible. Persad-Bissessar thanked the people of Tobago for their patience, dignity and fortitude for the past 14 years of waiting on the $735 million hospital, and said she would not allow such delays to reoccur.
"And here we are today making you the promise that for as long as our government continues, we must never allow history to repeat itself, in the way it did for the past 14 years. Tobago stands side by side with Trinidad, and with my government we will commit to that," Persad-Bissessar said.
Persad-Bissessar said the 100-bed hospital is a representation of what true partnership is all about.
"I must say that this project has truly been a team effort. It has shown that indeed, partnership is a vital factor, in making dreams into a reality," Persad-Bissessar said. She said health care must also involve healthy lifestyles and said her government will do all, to protect the children of the country, where health and other services are concerned
Health Secretary Claudia Groome-Duke said it was a new start towards better health care services, for the people of Tobago, and the country at large.
"This ceremony ushers in a new era, for both staff and patients, and sets new benchmarks for patient care," Groome-Duke said.
The hospital will provide both in-patient and out-patient services. CT scan services have started, and others are to begin next week.
THA Chief Secretary Orville London said the hospital project sits on the threshold of success, and thanked previous THA Chief Secretary Hochoy Charles and others for the work that went before.
"Every political party has shared in the pain, work and praise of this entire process. We cannot underestimate the importance of this facility to the people of Tobago, who have high expectations," London said.
The plaque was then unveiled to signal the commissioning of the hospital. Persad-Bissessar, Health Minister Dr Fuad Khan, Chief Secretary London, and Health Secretary Groome-Duke, conducted a brief tour of the radiology department and other parts of the facility. See Page 16.