BUKIT Mertajam Hospital will have an enclosed structure built adjacent to its Emergency and Trauma Unit to accommodate an additional 32 beds for the influx of Covid-19 patients.
Bukit Mertajam MP Steven Sim Chee Keong said the extra beds would be an addition to the 16 beds available there at present.
“The new structure will increase the hospital’s emergency unit capacity and help with the influx of Covid-19 patients at the unit.
“The new beds will be placed at an enclosed partition to be put up adjacent to where the Emergency and Trauma Unit is located.
“The upgrading work, which has begun and expected to take three weeks to complete, will ensure better workflow at the unit,” said Sim, who is the coordinator between the Federal and Penang governments on Covid-19 issues.
Sim also said the donation of RM234,000 by national badminton icon Datuk Lee Chong Wei would help fund the upgrading work and the additional beds.
“I reached out to Lee on the need after the Bukit Mertajam Hospital was turned into a Covid-19 hybrid hospital last month.
“This increase in capacity at the hospital will enable serious Covid-19 cases to get early treatment while waiting to be transferred to the Penang Hospital’s intensive care unit,” he said.
Sim said the 135sq m (1,453sq ft) enclosed partition would be a permanent structure which the hospital could use for crisis purposes in the future when there are many casualties.
“It will be part of the Emergency and Trauma Department,” he added.
He said apart from the beds, Lee’s donation would cover the cost of engineering and construction works such as fixing of the awning, flooring, partition walls, drainage, water piping and electrical wiring.
On Saturday, Health director- general said Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah expressed his gratitude via social media to Lee for contributing via his foundation to upgrade Bukit Mertajam Hospital.
“The Health Ministry and I thank and extend our sincere appreciation to the Lee Chong Wei Foundation for the contribution to upgrade the hospital’s emergency and trauma unit.
“Hopefully, it can be utilised for residents nearby,” his tweet read.
In July this year, Bukit Mertajam Hospital was converted into a Covid-19 hybrid hospital following the increase in the number of cases in Penang.