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by Sheree-Anita Shearer | Associate Writer
The Mandeville Hospital opened its doors in 1877 with 206 beds to serve the town of Mandeville and its environs. The hospital, built on an old British army base, was a much-needed addition to the town. These lands and additional plots were donated to the Jamaican Government by the British.
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1938, was the first expansion of the hospital since there was a need at the time for a tuberculosis ward as the disease was quite common at the time.
Further expansion efforts to the sum of £ 20,000 were made in 1955 as the need for an altogether new hospital building became imperative as the population it served had increased significantly by then.
The true benefit of that was probably not realised until the very unfortunate Kendall crash in 1957, just 2 years later.
The tragic train crash occurred less than 10 miles away from the Mandeville hospital which meant the brunt of the medical response was taken on by the hospital.
Even with the then-recent modifications, rapid reconfiguration was needed to accommodate the patients coming in from one of the most devastating accidents in Jamaica’s history.
Also to assist the hospital to be more efficient, outpatient care was relocated to the hospital grounds and has remained ever since.
In 1964, the maternity ward was included as mother’s now preferred giving birth at the hospital over home births which were practised before.
The medical and surgical wards, as well as an operating theatre, were added in 1968 and in the 70s new x-ray equipment was bought. The outpatient department then added surgery, medicine, ophthalmology, psychiatry, dermatology, dental care and dietetics to its services. The drug window was introduced in 1978.
In August 2022, the Mandeville Regional Hospital were classified as a baby-friendly hospital.
This comes as part of the government’s efforts to provide the necessary support needed for mothers to breastfeed exclusively for 6 months before introducing complementary food and continuing breastfeeding for at least 2 years.
It also assists mothers who aren’t breastfeeding to make the best decision for their children when it comes to breastfeeding alternatives.
Improvements have steadily continued at the Mandeville hospital over the years. This makes it one of the preferred hospitals in Jamaica. A majority of its patients are from St. Elizabeth, Clarendon and of course Manchester.
The Mandeville Regional Hospital is a Type B institution which caters to just over 1,000 clients daily. The facility, which is administered by the Southern Regional Health Authority (SRHA), was initially called the Mandeville Public Hospital before its name changed in 2000.
A type B hospital in Jamaica has specialities in internal medicine, general surgery, obstetrics and gynaecology, paediatric medicine, and anesthesiology.
Most general surgical procedures can be performed at these hospitals. Cases from Type C hospitals like the Black River hospital can be referred to as Type B hospitals.
More advanced medical concerns are sent to Type A hospitals like the Kingston Public Hospital. Mandeville Regional Hospital is 1 of 5 Type B hospitals on the island.
On weekends and public holidays visiting hours is half an hour earlier and end half an hour later.
The Orthopaedic doctor is available on Thursdays.
Ms Sadie Allen
Mr Alwyn Miller
Dr Everton McIntosh
Yes, Mandeville Regional is free. Visits to public hospitals and clinics come at no financial cost to the citizens in Jamaica as healthcare is free.
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Mandeville Hospital Jamaica | Written: January 7, 2023
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