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The emergency service care offered, 24 hours a day, seven days a week by Central Romana’s Centro Medico (the Central Romana Hospital) is outstanding – a topic discussed in an interview with Dr. José López Larache, the Health Vice President of Central Romana & Director of the Centro Médico.
Dr. Lopez told casadecampoliving.com, that the hospital is equppied with state-of-the-art ambulances and training paramedics on call 24 hours a day. There is an ambulance permanently stationed within the Casa de Campo resort, and there are three stationed at the Centro Médico.
“We are pioneers, I am sure, in critical care medicine in the country. Nobody is more efficient than us,” said Dr, Lopez with pride.
Dr. José López Larache has been the director of the hospital for 14 years. He studied medicine at the Pontificia Universidad Catolica Madre y Maestra (PUCMM), in Santo Domingo, and then specialized in New York, United States.
Emergency entrance to the Centro Médico
When questioned about what other ways the Centro Médico (Central Romana Hospital) stands out above other medical facilities in the country, Dr. Lopez spoke about hygiene and the cleanliness maintained in the medical center.
By adopting American standards and products to clean all the hospital rooms, they are able to ensure strict bacterial control, which limits infection.
He also mentioned their excellent practices of waste incineration, which prevents infections being transfered from patients and staff, as well as their environmental control chain – air conditioning in all rooms. In addition, he talked about the continuing education program for all medical staff and nurses.
In terms of technological resources, Dr. Lopez called the Central Romana Hospital a “core diagnostic center,” where X-rays, CT scans, sonograms and mammograms, as well as other procedures can be performed 24 hours a day – without patients ever needing to leave the hospital.
In the rare occasion that “se fue la luz” (there is a power-cut), the hospital has it’s own power generator. Other facilities the Doctor is particularly proud of is their neonatal intensive unit, two delivery suits and specialized operating room for caesarean section deliveries, as well as the MRI machine – the only one in the East of the Dominican Republic. There is no doubt that Dr. Lopez and his staff are committed to Central Romana’s philosophy of “serving the people no matter their circumstances“.
“Everyone who comes for help is helped -and then we do the paperwork, according to the policies of Central Romana,” said Dr. Lopez explaining that patients are not refused because they have no health insurance.
To further enhance the hospital’s medical service, Dr. Lopez told us that they are trying to buy a new high-generation scanner, a piece of equipment which will allow doctors to see closely into a patient’s heart; arteries and ventricles as well as lungs and blood vessels. This scanner will aid the diagnosis of coronary disease, which causes heart failure.
The Centro Médico (Central Romana Hospital) currently has a team of 72 doctors and 78 nurses, serving in various medical specialties such as neurosurgery, neurology, gastroenterology, cardiology, pediatrics, general and internal medicine, ophthalmology and dermatology, among others.
Dr. Elizabeth Leon, a general surgery specialist at the Centro Médico, demonstrates the “Olympus Endo Alpha Smart” keyhole surgery equipment to former President Fernandez at the in inauguration of the new Centro Médico in November 2011.
About the new “Centro Médico”
Central Romana’s new hospital; the “Centro Médico”, boasts three levels with lifts, a helipad for medical emergencies, 84 beds in comfortable private and semi-private rooms, four surgical suites with the latest medical equipment and technology, with one operating room equipped with the “Olympus Endo Alpha Smart” a system used for keyhole (laparoscopic) general surgery, two intensive care and coronary units, allowing patients to be under continuous monitoring and even a specialized burn unit with specialist bathing equipment, as well as a Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics, a full clinical laboratory, a fully remodeled ER (emergency area), a 24 hour pharmacy and Café.
The new Central Romana Medical Center has a thousand kilowatt electrical generator, a steam boiler, hot water and a water treatment system and additional facilities include a modern system of security cameras in all common areas, a sprinkler system in case of fire, fire-resistant doors and stairs for emergency access routes on each floor.
The “Centro Médico”, was designed by Cottin Malcolm Architects, from the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio, and Silvia Sanchez staff of the Engineering Department of the Central Romana Corporation, Ltd., who was responsible for the construction work.