King opens Princess Fusipala Hospital of Ha’apai
08th November 2019 His Majesty King Tupou VI officially opened a new hospital for Ha’apai on Wednesday, November 6 and he named it Princess Fusipala Hospital. The hospital is located on the highest point of the island, 15 meters above sea level.
The Princess Fusipala Hospital replaces Niu’ui Hospital, located 6 meters from the coastline and were damaged by an earthquake that struck Tonga in 2006 and the Category Five Cyclone Ian that hit the Ha’apai Island Group in 2014 and the relocation is a climate-resilient measure moving it to safer ground.
In explaining the project, Hon Poasi Mataele Tei said that new facility has 1,200m² of floor area with 23 beds in total, five 4-bed wards, a semi-private 2-bedroom and one bed Intensive Care Unit. It also contains modern facilities including an emergency room, operating theatre, labour and delivery room, maternity ward and post-natal care rooms.
It also include a large X-ray and scanning rooms, an office for radiology registrar for analysis and reporting, medical record room for storage of medical files of patients, an air-conditioned pharmacy, doctors consultation rooms with spacious reception area, laboratory with a positive pressure ventilation system to avoid cross-contamination, dental facility, 500,000 litres of rainwater storage tanks on the roofs and on the ground plus a rainwater capture system and a new medical waste incinerator.
The medical staff and patients will be transferred to the newly constructed hospital while Niu’ui is providing accommodation for staff until the staff quarters are built on the new site. A vehicle has also been provided to transfer staff from Niu’ui to the new hospital.
Minister for Health Hon ‘Amelia Afuha’amango Tu’ipulotu said that, “The hospital has been designed to the highest international standards to be a decentralized hospital with excellent facilities which will serve the needs of the residents of Ha’apai and the surrounding islands for the foreseeable future without the need to refer patients to Vaiola Hospital in Tongatapu.”
The construction of the Princess Fusipala Hospital was funded by the Asian Development Bank through the Climate Resilience Sector Project under the Ministry of MEIDECC.
The Prime Minister Hon Dr Pohiva Tu’i’onetoa gave the vote of thanks and was also joined by the Minister for Health Dr ‘Amelia Afuha’amango, Minister for Infrastructure and Tourism Hon ‘Akosita Lavulavu, Minister for MEIDECC Hon Poasi Tei, Government CEOs and guests to celebrate the opening of the new hospital at Pangai, Ha’apai.
Issued by the: Ministry of Meteorology, Energy, Information, Disaster Management, Environment, Climate Change and Communications.