7:47 AM

Red Cross to spend SLR 400 Million to Polonnaruwa General Hospital

The Canadian Red Cross Society will spend 400 million Rupees to upgrade Polonnaruwa General Hospital to a three story hospital with the most modern facilities, A Red Cross website has announced.

The Relief web of the Red Cross said, “The Canadian Red Cross (CRC) Society will spend 366 million rupees for the construction of new building and Rs. 50 million to provide the required medical equipment. There will be an outpatient department, X-ray room, clinics dispensaries, an auditorium and administration area in this new building.”

The Red Cross further said, that the new three story building complex will be constructed at Polonnaura general hospital that will bring improvements to the level of healthcare provided to the people of Polonnaruwa district and neighboring areas. The relief web also said that Polonnaruwa is one of the districts in the North Central Province of Sri Lanka where the majority of the population depends on agriculture and this General Hospital is the main health facility available for the people in the district who come from far distant rural areas.

This building constrution project was initiated by the Sri Lanka Red Cross Society under the post Tsunami recovery program. International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) will provide technical assistance for the project.

The ceremony of the laying of the foundation stone for the new complex on 14th of August, 2008 was attended by Minister of Healthcare and Nutrition Nimal Siripala De Silva, Minister of Agriculture Development and Agrarian Services Maitreepala Sirisena, Minister of Agrarian Services Siripala Gamlath Deputy Minister of Land and Land Development Chandrasiri Sooriyarachchi, President of the Sri Lanka Red Cross Society Jagath Abeysinghe, National Secretary S.H. Nimal Kumar, Head of Delegation IFRC Paul Emese, construction delegate of Canadian Red Cross Niloo Szand and Chairman of the Pollonnaruwa SLRCS branch H P Wijayasena. During the occation the Liquid Oxygen storage system constructed with CRC funding was also handed over to hospital authorities.

The Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, the web said, has made a long term commitment towards rebuilding Sri Lanka's health sector. The Red Cross and Red Crescent's post tsunami health infrastructure development programme which is constructing and renovating a total of 77 health facilities across 16 districts of Sri Lanka under a MoU agreed with the Ministry of Health, it further reported. The 77 projects include the construction, renovation or refurbishment of wide range of health care facilities including district and base level hospitals as well as clinics and dispensaries. Construction of nurse training centres and providing 6 oxygen storage facilities at different hospitals also include the programme. The Red Cross will be equipping most of these facilities with medical equipment which ranges from hospital beds to sophisticated X-ray and ultrasound machines.

Already more than 25 hospitals and clinics have been completed and handed over, the Releif Web said.

This programme will run until 2010 and majority of projects are expected to be completed by 2009, the website promised.