Deputy Chairman, Tobago Regional Health Authority (TRHA) Board, Ingrid Melville, yesterday confirmed that the surgical ward of the Scarborough General Hospital (SGH) was flooded out Saturday during the torrential showers experienced in Tobago.
Chief Secretary Kelvin Charles and Melville visited the site of the Scarborough General Hospital, to assess the situation and interact with those affected, both staff and patients.
Melville said all patients were relocated to the medical ward, where arrangements were made to ensure that a satisfactory level of comfort was achieved. First responder crews such as Tobago Emergency Management Agency (TEMA) and the Trinidad and Tobago Fire Services were on location to assist with clean-up efforts at the hospital.
Melville also indicated that visiting hours were closed off yesterday as efforts were being made to restore safety at the hospital. Melville assured the patients, families and the public that management and staff of the hospital continue to take all necessary steps to manage the situation, ensure patient safety and full resumption of operations at the Scarborough General Hospital.
Chief Secretary Charles commended the management and staff of the Scarborough General Hospital for their professionalism and cooperation in dealing with the unforeseen situation. “I was very heartened by the swift action taken by staff at the hospital. They truly demonstrated a commitment to service and care to their patients and this should be heralded.”
Meanwhile, cleanup operations in Tobago is expected to be completed today following widespread flooding last Friday.
Last Friday Tobago experienced power outages, street and flash flooding, fallen trees and landslides across the island after hours of heavy rain.
There were reports of power outages in the areas of Signal Hill, Mason Hall and along the North side road. The Tobago Emergency Management Agency reported landslides at the Northside Road near Gad Hill, Mason Hall; traffic was diverted through Cocoa Watty Trace. There was also reports of a landslide which made the Adelphi Road in Mason Hall impassable and in Goodwood blocking the Big Hole area.
In addition flooding was experienced in the lowlands, Canaan/Bon Accord Area, Lowlands, Bagatelle, Friendsfield, Turtle Beach, Scipio Trace Carnbee, downtown Milford Road, Scarborough and Mason Hall areas.
Within the six hours of heavy rainfall there were at least 20 incident reports around Tobago. Many businesses, including the View Port Supermarket along Milford Road were forced to close after water began sweeping into the stores around 3pm. Scotiabank was also impacted after the Crooks River, located downtown Scarborough overflowed. The bank was partially flooded.
Around 2.30pm there was flooding at the Adult Surgical ward at the hospital. One visitor, waiting to see a relative told Newsday Tobago that all patients on the ward were relocated to one room. She said visitors were unable to see their relatives and were not told exactly which ward they were moved to. She also stated, “we cannot see our loved ones mainly because of the fact that the patients are all in an area where it lacks space. The people of Trinidad and Tobago have to suffer for the incompetence of architecture and management of the health department. It is a terrible situation and honestly a shame.”