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Ocean View Hotel, gymnasium, Sports Hall, identified for COVID-19 patients

The abandoned building at 44 High Street, Werk-en-Rust, Georgetown.

Government has taken over the now closed Ocean View International Hotel to convert it to an emergency hospital for COVID-19 cases should the situation worsen, Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo said Saturday.

With the Pan American Health Organisation (PAHO) now forecasting that Guyana’s coronavirus cases can peak to as much as 20,000 persons, government has been finalising makeshift accommodation.

“We have looked at the proposal for a dedicated hospital and we have identified a building in the immediate vicinity of the City and East Coast (Demerara) at what used to be the Ocean View Hotel and work is now going on there to make that into a dedicated hospital,” he said. The former Ocean View International Hotel is located on the Rupert Craig Highway, Liliendaal, East Coast Demerara.

The Prime Minister said that building would be used for isolation or medical quarantine of confirmed COVID-19 cases.

Nagamootoo said government was also considering an abandoned building that had replaced the the radio studio and administration building of the now defunct Guyana Broadcasting Corporation (GBC), previously Radio Demerara. “We have identified that (building). An examination is being done to see if all of it or some sections… That may be in consideration as a dedicated, specialised institution to deal with the corona,” he said

The Prime Minister said government was also exploring using the Guyana National Gymnasium on Mandela Avenue, Georgetown and the National Sports Hall on Homestretch Avenue to cater for as many as 1,000 persons.

Construction experts have found that the building is too weak to house furniture, staff and equipment for any government ministry or department.