The Eco-tourism Development Programme, of the Ministry of Tourism, funded by the European Union and the Government of Dominica, has provided the Government of Dominica with a hyperbaric chamber at a cost of Euro 750,000 as part of the Dive Improvement programme.
The Chamber arrived in Dominica on June 2, 2006.
The hyperbaric chamber, also called a decompression chamber, is used to treat certain respiratory illnesses, decompression and other dive-related accidents. The hyperbaric chamber will boost Dominica’s Dive industry, putting it on par with international standards and requirements. It represents a safety blanket in the unlikely event of a diving accident and will serve to assure potential scuba divers that Dominica has the ability to manage and treat dive-related accidents.
From the inception of the Dive Industry, the Dominica Watersports Association depended on the French West Indies for these services.
The chamber will also be of immense benefit to the health care system in Dominica and will be almost used exclusively by the medical services. It is equipped with an oxygen generator sufficient to supply the oxygen needs of the Princess Margaret Hospital. Government is expected to realize savings of approximately E.C. $ 250,000 per annum as a result.
The Chamber is important in the treatment of a range of common ailments, ranging from respiratory, diabetic and major injury to anaemia, skin grafts, and gangrene.
The manufacturer contracted to construct and install the chamber will be arriving in Dominica next week to effect installation as well as to provide technical training to the medical staff and to certified instructors of the Dominica Watersports Association, The objective of the training programme is to ensure proper use of the chamber as well as effective staffing and maintenance
Prior to the arrival of the Chamber, Dr. Julien Eden of EX-med Private Medical Services of the U.K provided basic medical training to the medical doctors attached to the PMH.
The hyperbaric chamber will be housed at the Princess Margaret Hospital.
Source: Dominican Times