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The Millennium Heights Medical Complex (MHMC) commissioned its Oxygen Plant on Friday, describing the event as a pivotal step forward in the commitment to providing exceptional, people-centered healthcare services to the community.
Chief Executive Officer Dr. Dexter James disclosed that the commissioning, the Owen King European Union Hospital (OKEUH), the MHMC’s principal oxygen user, consumed over 10,800 bottles annually.
James said that amounted to between 25 and 31 bottles daily.
However, the new plant can generate a reliable and continuous supply of over 50 oxygen bottles a day, nearly twice the average daily consumption.
Dr. James recalled that preceding the oxygen plant commissioning, the Ministry of Health, Wellness, and Elderly Affairs supplied the physical plant through its World Bank-financed Health Systems Strengthening Project (HSSP).
He disclosed that of the four submissions received during a tendering process, HL Construction Limited of St. Lucia got the nod to construct the oxygen housing costing USD$129,852 (XCD$311,982).
The MHMC board applied to the philanthropic organization, the Maria Holder Memorial Trust, a Registered Charity from Barbados, which approved USD$129,851 (XCD$311,982) to construct the oxygen housing.
The agreement, among other things, required the OKEU Hospital to effect insurance coverage for fire and other perils.
Construction works for the oxygen housing commenced on April 24th, 2023, and by July 24th, 2023, 3 months later, H L Construction Limited completed it on time, within 3 months, within budget of XCD$311,982 and with the highest standard of quality workmanship, the MHMC CEO told Friday’s commissioning ceremony.
James said the final project stage was the oxygen plant’s technical commissioning, accomplished in late October 2023 by the onsite commissioning, start-up, and training by the United Kingdom’s Acute Medical Gas (AMG).
The MHMC CEO praised Windward Island Gases Limited for supporting Saint Lucia with all its oxygen needs through the ‘very difficult’ COVID-19 pandemic.
James revealed that even today, the company supplies the hospital with its daily consumption of approximately 25 bottles.
“We will continue to procure oxygen from Windward Island Gases at significantly lower levels and focus our attention on preserving the continued relationship by reducing the balance outstanding to the company” he said.