AN investigation has been launched into a fire on Monday at the physiotherapy department of the Port of Spain General Hospital on Monday afternoon, says Agriculture Minister Clarence Rambharat.
He was responding to an urgent question in the Senate yesterday on behalf of the Health Minister.
Rambharat repeated most of the information contained in a North West Regional Health Authority (NWRHA) release which said that at approximately 2.40 pm smoke was seen coming from the department and the Fire Service was called in. Preliminary reports indicated the source was in the kitchen of the department.
As a precautionary measure three patients from the Intensive Care Unit (ICU), which is above the physiotherapy department, were moved to another area. No one was injured.
Rambharat said yesterday the patients from the ICU were returned on Monday night after the area was cleaned and cleared for occupation by the internal health and safety department and the Fire Services.
"We thank these patients and their families for assisting us in this exercise."
He also thanked the staff at the hospital and the Fire Services for their support.
The physiotherapy department was closed yesterday to facilitate deep cleaning and outpatients with appointments were contacted to reschedule them. He said the hospital is committed to ensuring the outpatients are accommodated quickly.
In addition, he said an internal investigation into the cause of the fire is ongoing.