A new hospital that will include an urgent care section and employ about 40 people is scheduled to open in the centre of Hamilton in June.
It will be in addition to the outpatient services and no appointment walk-ins that are available at the moment from Bermuda Medical Specialties Group on Reid Street, next to Phoenix Annex.
“The changing landscape of healthcare and patients’ desire for access to sophisticated healthcare services on-island have led us to establish a new system of care for Bermuda”, said Arlene Basden, medical director at BMSG.
“We have chosen to expand our services to include a hospital which will aid to provide the right care at the right time and in the right setting.”
BMSG started with primary care, specialist physicians, diagnostic testing, medical consults and investigations on the third floor of Reid Hall last year. It is currently using 8,500 sq ft of the building; with ten exam and treatment rooms. However, this will be expanded by another 5,000 sq ft in the next phase of the development, with the opening of an urgent care facility at street level in the former premises of P-Tech.
There will be staffing and future beds on the second floor, sleep testing, dietary services, women’s health services, outpatient procedures and, in collaboration with others, pharmacy, laboratory and imaging services.
The group said there will be 30 doctors available under one roof, “and all with access to a single, electronic patient record”.
Dr Basden said: “As a patient, BMSG doctors will have access to all of your records: your GP/family doctor records, your urgent care records, your local and overseas specialist records, and your KEMH visit records. This will aid all BMSG doctors to be on the same page and to have a cohesive approach to your care.”
Marico Thomas, chief executive officer of BMSG, said: “We have an unprecedented opportunity to care for our patients and all residents of Bermuda in new and better ways.
“We believe everyone should have access to high-quality, affordable care, whether they live on North Shore, South Shore or somewhere in-between.”
In a statement, BMSG said its goal is to improve access to international-level medical services on-island, in Bermuda, while aiding to reduce costs and improve outcomes.
The first floor, walk-in and urgent care facility will offer a no appointment, express service.
On the second and third floors, BMSG said it will offer “a comprehensive primary care GP and specialist physician service focused on longevity and quality of life”.
Additional services will include personalised medicine and corporate wellness services.
Mr Thomas said: “BMSG wishes to collaborate with, not compete with, the King Edward Memorial Hospital. When KEMH beds are full and its emergency department is overwhelmed, the BMSG Hospital and urgent care will aid to reduce the pressure on KEMH.”
The urgent care facilities will, among other things, treat cold and flu, minor bruises and injuries, fevers, allergies, sprains, sore throats, infections, rashes, earaches, persistent coughs, nausea, minor cuts and burns.
BMSG expects urgent care patients to usually wait no longer than 15 minutes on average, from entering the door to seeing a doctor.
Dr Basden said: “The BMSG urgent care will have a triage room to allow personnel to quickly assess the seriousness of each patient, and will aid to determine when a patient should transfer to the BHB emergency department.”
In its statement, BMSG said to help with full bed counts at KEMH, it has a large range of outpatient services including cardiology, neurology, pulmonology, rheumatology, endocrinology, dermatology, cosmetic plastic surgery, asthma and allergy, sleep medicine, family and internal medicine.
Mr Thomas said: “There are different types of hospital models around the world. A micro-hospital or mini-hospital, as we have been called, can perform many of the same services as larger ones, and can bring benefit by reducing hospital stays, and lowering costs.”
The hospital is expecting to employ about 40 people and also accept volunteers.
Mr Thomas said: “At BMSG, our sense of purpose is very clear and simple. Dr Basden became a doctor because she wanted to make sure Bermuda’s healthcare system could take care of her mother when such time came. The goal of BMSG is to support Dr Basden in her mission to provide the best care possible for all of our loved ones.”
The urgent care facility is under construction. BMSG is open and accepting new patients and referrals. Its doors are directly beside the big clock on the sidewalk next to the Phoenix Annex