The B2 Ward at Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital has received a R10.5million upgrade and was officially opened today, the 7th of March 2013.
Ward B2, which has capacity to admit 29 children, was built in 1956 and has only had minor upgrades since then. This ward admits children with a wide range of medical conditions including, infectious and chronic illnesses like TB and HIV and treats about 1 100 patients a year.
The number of ward admissions and turnover of patients has, however, significantly increased compared to 1956. Overcrowding and hospital-acquired infections became a serious concern as the ward’s infrastructure struggled to keep up with the increasing number of admissions. Despite these challenges, the ward and its dedicated staff continued to provide the best possible care to patients and their families. Furthermore, B2 remains an important area for clinical research and training of medical professionals.
The ward’s operational manager, Sr Lindiwe Teto, said she is looking forward to the ward’s six new isolation cubicles, which has increased from two.
“It was very challenging, before the ward was upgraded, to find adequate isolation for infectious patients,” she said. “For example a seriously ill TB patient would sometimes be admitted to an isolation cubicle for more than a month and we would be unable to admit other children into isolation because there was not enough space.”
Other improvements with the upgrade include:
- Less overcrowding and a better hospital experience
- Better facilities for staff and parents
- Provide relaxation and rest space for staff, patients and families that is comfortable, child friendly and attractive
- Eliminate crowded, stressful passages as sufficient space is made available for the entrance, upgraded ablutions, dedicated office spaces and a kitchen facility
The upgrade of the ward was made possible by the 18-year-old public-private partnership between the Western Cape Government and the Children’s Hospital Trust. The ward is the 9th upgrade to be made possible by this 50-50 partnership.
Louise Driver, CEO of the Children’s Hospital Trust said: “We are extremely grateful to all our donors who have chosen to support this special hospital through donating to the Children’s Hospital Trust and helped us upgrade the B2 Medical Ward. Though this is the last ward to be upgraded, our work in improving the services provided by the Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital is far from over. This ward will continue to provide the best medical care to treat the sickest and youngest patients in the hospital and we will continue to fundraise for the hospital’s priority needs and paediatric healthcare in the Western Cape.”
Click here to view images from the opening.